Congress passes helium legislation

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed an amended version of H.R. 527--the Responsible Helium Administration and Stewardship Act--one day after the House had passed the legislation.

With the passage, it appears congress has averted an impending helium shortage that could have seriously impacted a number of radiology facilities dependent on helium to cool their MRI machines. Without the legislation, the Federal Helium Reserve would have been forced to shut down on Oct. 7, triggering an estimated 30 percent drop in world helium supplies.

The Obama administration has indicated it supports the legislation, and that the president will sign the bill once it reaches his desk. Announcement

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