The U.S. Navy has announced the fate of the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, USS Enterprise (CVN-65), years after its decommissioning.
USS Enterprise will be dismantled and disposed of by commercial industry at three potential locations: Newport News (Virginia), Brownsville (Texas), or Mobile (Alabama).
Commercial firms will be responsible for dismantling the defueled reactor plants and disposing of reactor components through authorized waste disposal sites as part of "Alternative 3."
The decision aims to reduce the Navy's inactive vessel inventory, cut maintenance costs, and dispose of hazardous and radiological waste responsibly.
USS Enterprise, known as the "Big E," retired in 2012 after more than 50 years of service, with involvement in the Cuban Missile Crisis, Afghanistan, and Iraq wars.
The carrier has been decommissioned since 2017 and is currently docked at Newport News Shipbuilding.
CVN 65 is the eighth vessel named Enterprise, and its legacy will continue in the next-gen Gerald R. Ford-class carrier under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding.
This decision aligns with the Navy's operational requirements and environmental responsibility, as stated by the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility.