University of California and Bechtel Announce Agreement to Prepare for Los Alamos National Laboratory Competition

    OAKLAND, Calif., May 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The University of California and a
 Bechtel-led industrial team announced an historic agreement today (Wednesday)
 to prepare for the Department of Energy competition to manage the Los Alamos
 National Laboratory in New Mexico.
     With a proven track record of excellence in science and technology, the
 University of California (UC) has 60 years of experience in leading the
 nation's nuclear weapons research and development programs. Bechtel National,
 joined by BWX Technologies Inc., and Washington Group International, brings a
 best-in-class business management and industrial operations lineup to Los
 Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).
     Bechtel National provides world-class program and project management,
 facilities management, safety and environmental management, and robust
 government business systems. As premier managers of complex, high-consequence
 nuclear and national security operations, BWXT and Washington Group will
 ensure safe and secure, effective and efficient nuclear facilities operations.
     Together, the UC-Bechtel led team will combine unparalleled scientific
 achievement with efficient business management, while ensuring safe, secure
 and effective nuclear facilities operations. Going forward, this partnership
 will provide Los Alamos National Laboratory with strong management that
 delivers superb quality, accountability and dedication, demonstrated by
 experience, to both management and scientific operations. This partnership
 allows strong management to be in place, ensuring that critical science and
 technology remains the underpinning of the laboratory's mission.
     "This agreement brings together the expertise of the largest public
 research institution in the world with a seasoned team of contractors, led by
 Bechtel, to put in place a strong management and operations team that will
 ensure the continued excellence of the laboratory's scientific mission," said
 UC President Robert C. Dynes. "This new management team builds on the
 strengths of each organization and applies them to the important national
 security work at the lab.
     "The university recognized it needed to make major changes in how it
 manages LANL, and bringing in industrial partners with the skill sets of
 Bechtel National, Washington Group, and BWXT will accomplish this," Dynes
 added.
     "Through this new management structure, Bechtel National, with its
 substantial experience throughout the DOE and NNSA complex, will implement the
 necessary changes, policies and procedures to support world-class science at
 LANL," Bechtel National President Thomas Hash said. "Operations run in a safe
 and secure manner will ensure that the premier science and technology that has
 come from this lab for the past 60 years will continue."
     In a joint statement, BWXT President and COO John Fees and President of
 Washington Group Energy and Environment Preston Rahe said, "As we improve
 operations -- including safeguards and security, nuclear operations, and
 environment, safety, and health -- we believe the university will be able to
 take the science and technology, as well as national security programs at the
 laboratory to the next level of performance."
     In late March, UC announced it would also partner with a consortium of New
 Mexico institutions to form the Advanced Studies Institute at Los Alamos
 National Laboratory. These institutions include the University of New Mexico,
 New Mexico State University and New Mexico Institute for Mining and
 Technology. The agreement with these institutions solidifies the role of New
 Mexico universities as part of a bid to compete for the LANL contract.
     While UC continues to prepare for the competition, the university's final
 decision regarding participation will be made by the UC Board of Regents
 following the release of the final request for proposals.
 
     BACKGROUND ON THE COMPETITION PROCESS
     Los Alamos National Laboratory -- The contract to manage LANL expires
 Sept. 30, 2005. On April 30, 2003, then-U.S. Secretary of Energy Spencer
 Abraham announced that the DOE would compete the management and operations
 contract for Los Alamos National Laboratory. On Dec. 1, 2004, the DOE's
 National Nuclear Security Administration released the draft request for
 proposals (RFP). The draft RFP was amended on Feb. 18 and April 5, 2005. A
 final RFP is expected in the near future. The deadline for submission of bids
 is expected to be 90 days after the release of the final RFP. According to
 DOE, a source evaluation board made up of DOE technical and business experts
 will review the proposals submitted and provide recommendations to the source
 selection official.
 
     UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA
     The University of California, chartered in 1868, is a system of 10
 campuses with a mission of teaching, research and public service. With 208,000
 undergraduate and graduate students, UC is the world's premier public
 university. UC has five medical schools, three law schools, and the nation's
 largest continuing education program. Forty-nine researchers affiliated with
 UC have been awarded Nobel Prizes; 16 of the Nobel Prizes have been won since
 1995. In addition, UC has 358 members in the National Academy of Sciences, and
 UC affiliated researchers have received 48 Medals of Science since Congress
 created the award in 1959. UC manages three national laboratories on behalf of
 the Department of Energy. Today, Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos national
 laboratories each employ more then 8,000 UC staff and have combined annual
 budgets exceeding $3.8 billion, while Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
 has approximately 4,000 employees and an annual budget of nearly $500 million.
 The university was recently awarded a five-year contract from DOE to continue
 management of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
     The national laboratories are major sources of scientific and technical
 strength for the nation in fields ranging from national security, to basic
 physics, biotechnology, climate studies, computer development, materials
 science, energy, and the environment. The laboratories contribute to the
 country's economic competitiveness through research partnerships with industry
 and engage in math and science education for students and teachers at all
 levels.  For more news and information about the University of California:
 www.universityofcalifornia.edu
 
     BECHTEL
     Bechtel is a global engineering, construction and project management
 company with more than a century of experience mastering complex projects in
 challenging locations. Privately owned, with headquarters in San Francisco,
 the company has 40,000 employees working in 50 countries. Bechtel National,
 Inc. is supporting national security and U.S. intelligence and defense
 efforts, developing new technologies to fight terrorism, monitoring the
 consequences of terrorist acts, designing emergency response programs, and
 training both military and civilian responders nationwide. Additionally, BNI
 has broad capabilities and extensive experience in the management of complex,
 multisite, environmental programs, including environmental cleanup projects at
 several DOE sites in the United States.
     BNI's national security work includes managing and operating the Nevada
 Test Site and its affiliated facilities for the National Nuclear Security
 Administration. BNI is also a partner in management of NNSA's Y-12 National
 Security Complex in Tennessee and the Pantex Plant in Texas, as well as the
 Savannah River Site in South Carolina. Among its Department of Defense
 contracts, BNI manages the Kwajalein missile range and supports non-
 proliferation efforts in the former Soviet Union for the Defense Threat
 Reduction Agency. BNI's portfolio also includes over 15 years of government
 laboratory management and support experience.
     For more news and information about Bechtel National, Inc.:
 www.Bechtel.com
 
     BWX TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
     BWX Technologies, Inc. (BWXT), headquartered in Lynchburg, VA, is the
 nation's premier manager of complex, high-consequence nuclear and national
 security operations. Responsible for the operations of the Pantex Plant in
 Texas and Y-12 National Security Complex in Tennessee, along with nuclear
 operations at the Idaho National Laboratory, BWXT has a long history in
 nuclear manufacturing and operations, both in the Department of Energy (DOE)
 and at its unique, highly secure, privately owned and operated nuclear
 manufacturing and laboratory facilities. A supplier of nuclear products and
 services to the U.S. government and commercial clients for over 50 years, BWXT
 has unparalleled experience in nuclear safeguards and security and has been
 recognized as a model by the DOE. With more than 11,000 employees nationwide,
 BWXT manages complex, high-consequence nuclear and national security
 production facilities and is a principal supplier of nuclear components and
 advanced energy products, delivering both value and customer confidence.
     For more news and information about BWX Technologies, Inc.: www.bwxt.com/
     BWXT Public Relations: 1-434-522-5076 / 1-434-522-5158.
 
     WASHINGTON GROUP INTERNATIONAL
     Washington Group International, with headquarters in Boise, ID, provides
 the talent, innovation, and proven performance to deliver integrated
 engineering, construction, and management solutions for businesses and
 governments worldwide. A contractor for the U.S. Department of Energy and its
 predecessor agencies since the Manhattan Project, Washington Group is a leader
 in providing safe, disciplined operations, risk management and comprehensive
 environmental services for its customers. Its long history of successful DOE
 operations continues today with: management and operation contracts at the
 Savannah River Site, the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the West Valley
 Demonstration Project and its partnership in the Battelle Energy Alliance for
 operation of the Idaho National Laboratory. Washington Group also is involved
 in closure contracts at the Weldon Spring Remedial Action Project, Miamisburg
 Closure Project, Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site and the recently
 awarded Hanford River Closure and Idaho Cleanup Project, as well as technical
 support and consulting projects at Los Alamos, Lawrence Livermore and Sandia
 national laboratories, DOE's Hanford Site, Pantex Plant and Oak Ridge complex.
     For more news and information about Washington Group International:
 www.wgint.com
 
 

SOURCE Bechtel

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