US Energy Secretary Chu: US Firefighting Equipment Used In Japan
Last Update: 3/15/2011 11:06:13 AM
(Updates with details on U.S. firefighting equipment in paragraphs three through five.)
By Ryan Tracy Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
WASHINGTON--Energy Secretary Steven Chu affirmed the safety of U.S. nuclear facilities Tuesday, telling a congressional committee that the U.S. has "rigorous" regulations to ensure safety.
Chu said the Obama administration remains committed to safely pursuing a "diverse" set of energy sources to meet America's needs and that nuclear was included in that mix.
Chu said Japan has used U.S. firefighting equipment as it fights to keep radioactive material from leaking out of a power plant following a massive earthquake.
Reuters reported Tuesday that Japanese utility Tepco said it asked the U.S. military to put out a fire at the No. 4 reactor building at the ailing plant.
Chu also said Tuesday morning the U.S. had shipped "a great deal of monitoring equipment" to Japan and that the equipment was set to arrive in about two hours.
"The administration is committed to learning from Japan's experience as we work to continue to strengthen America's nuclear industry," Chu said at a hearing of the House Appropriations Committee, according to prepared remarks.
Chu's statements came as the safety of nuclear power plants in the U.S. falls under increased scrutiny following an explosion and leak of some radiation at the nuclear plant in Japan.