US has enough unaccounted for uranium, plutonium to make 5 functioning nuclear warheads

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For decades, the U.S. government has taken pains to help other countries account for their nuclear materials and to make sure they’re safe and secure. But within the United States, there are dozens of pounds of weapons-grade uranium and plutonium that are totally unaccounted for, roughly enough to make five functioning nuclear warheads.

And that’s just the quantity that’s been publicly reported, because the Department of Energy doesn’t discuss nuclear material that has been lost or stolen. It appears to have relatively few accountability measures in place to deal with problems when they happen.

Those are some of the findings of a new report published by the Center for Public Integrity. Patrick Malone is an investigative reporter at the center. He talked with Federal Drive with Tom Temin about the problem of what the government refers to as “Material Unaccounted For.”