The Plant Vogtle expansion project's cost overruns have put a spotlight on the upcoming Public Service Commission election in Georgia. In 2019, the PSC will rule on Georgia Power's energy plan for the next two decades.
The Trump administration's plan to help save coal and nuclear plants has stalled, says an unnamed White House official. "Efforts to ensure resilience of the grid continue while DOE's poorly articulated policy flounders in the National Economic Council," the source says.
Meetings were held Tuesday by Oregon and federal government representatives in Portland, Ore., to discuss modifying nuclear waste classifications at the Hanford nuclear site in Washington state. "The movement of waste through the Hanford environment is a very complex process that we're still trying to fully understand," says Jeff Burright, a nuclear waste remediation specialist with Oregon's Department of Energy.
The decommissioning process for the Fort Calhoun Station nuclear plant in Nebraska will move from SAFSTOR to DECON -- lowering the decommissioning time frame from 60 years to 10 years -- following the Omaha Public Power District board of directors' approval. The DECON process will likely utilize a low-level disposal site in Utah.
Four universities will share $40.5 million provided by the Energy Department's National Nuclear Security Administration to open nuclear research centers. "These cooperative agreements strengthen the nuclear security enterprise by advancing areas of science relevant to the stockpile stewardship mission and ensuring a pipeline of future scientists to carry out that mission," says Kathleen Alexander, assistant deputy administrator for research, development, test and evaluation in NNSA's Office of Defense Programs.
Federal appeals courts have upheld nuclear subsidies in New York and Illinois, meaning other states can draft their own similar programs to save nuclear plants, write attorneys Brian Potts and Mary Beall. The rulings "may give a lifeline to the entire nuclear power industry," they write.
The Trump administration's nuclear and coal plant bailout efforts have been put on hold following opposition from National Security Council and National Economic Council advisers, sources say. "The problem they've got is every option they might consider raises the costs for somebody at a time when nobody has an appetite for increased costs anywhere," says MPR Associates principal officer Bob Coward.
Some South Carolina Electric & Gas customers spoke ahead of the South Carolina Public Service Commission's hearing of the case against the utility that will determine financial responsibility for the failed V.C. Summer project. Testimony before the PSC begins next month, with a decision expected in December.
The Tennessee Valley Authority is continuing its $475 million upgrade of its Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant in Alabama. The plant's Unit 1 will be upgraded to the Extended Power Uprate level and will have an additional capacity of 465 megawatts, which can power 280,000 homes.
The early shutdown of the Three Mile Island nuclear plant in Pennsylvania will hurt the industry's technology know-how and hamper recruiting, writes Erin Mundahl. "An early closure at TMI would also have significant impacts on America's nuclear knowledge at a time when the industry is poised between a rapid decline and a renaissance," she writes.