NRC Issues Subsequent License Renewals for First Time to Nuclear Reactors in Florida

LCG, December 11, 2019--The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff recently approved Florida Power & Light's (FPL's) application for an additional 20 years of operation for Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Units 3 and 4. This is the first time the NRC has issued renewed licenses authorizing reactor operation from 60 to 80 years. The subsequent (or second) license renewals (SLRs) for Turkey Point Unit 3 and Unit 4 now expire on July 19, 2052 and April 10, 2053, respectively.

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New York Poised to Close Last Coal-fire Power Plant

LCG, December 4, 2019--The last operating coal-fired power plant in New York is moving toward closure shortly. Last month, Somerset Operating Company, a subsidiary of Riesling Power LLC, submitted a request to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to waive the state's required, 180-day notice to close the Somerset Station, allowing the facility to be retired on February 15, 2020. Closure is contingent on approvals by both NYSPSC and the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), which will evaluate if it will cause an adverse effect on grid reliability.

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Industry News

California Capsule: Transmission Takeover Talks Stall

LCG, Feb. 23, 2001Talks between representatives of California Gov. Gray Davis and officials of the state's three investor-owned utilities aimed at finding a way for the state to take over transmission facilities belonging to the cash-strapped companies have stalled with no resolution in sight.

No reason has been given for the impasse, but state sources have said the transmission system might cost the taxpayers $3 billion and industry sources have put the value of the grid at closer to $9 billion.

The wires takeover is part of Davis' plan to save the utilities from insolvency by giving them a cash infusion in exchange for their 75 percent of the state's power grid. Another element of the plan would have the companies issue $10 billion in bonds that is, take on more debt and be paid back by ratepayers over the next few decades.

"These are complicated problems that will not be solved overnight," said Pacific Gas & Electric Co. spokesman Ron Low yesterday. "There are clearly some issues where we are very far apart."

And the pot continues to bubble:

  • The California Department of Water Resources, which has emerged as the only purchasing agent with enough money for power producers to talk to, had hoped to get a ruling yesterday from the California Public Utilities Commission that PG&E and the state's two other investor-owned utilities would be responsible for the cash the water people are spending in the spot power market. The CPUC voted not to add the item to the agenda for yesterday's meeting. The matter may be taken up at the commission's regular meeting on March 7.

  • Mirant Corp., the former Southern Energy subsidiary of Georgia-based The Southern Co. and to California politicians a despised "out-of-state" power producer, said yesterday it sensed a growing consensus in Sacramento and among utility experts that consumers must pay more for electricity for the state to get out of its power problems. "Everyone is beginning to realize that the quickest and simplest way out of this situation is to stop shielding consumers from paying the true cost of the energy they use," said Randy Harrison, chief executive of Mirant's western U.S. operations.

  • The Williams Cos., which markets electric power in California, said yesterday it had signed a 10-year, fixed price agreement to supply up to 1,400 megawatts of power to the California Water Resources Board at an undisclosed price. Added to a similar 1,000 megawatt contract signed between Calpine Corp. and the state on February 7, it gives the water people about 5 percent of the power it needs to cover a hot day in the parts of the state served by the three utilities.

  • Things were looking so good for the California Independent System Operator yesterday that it didn't declare a power alert of any sort no Stage 3 with the possibility of blackouts, no Stage 2 with orders to curtail power delivery to customers with interruptible service contracts, no Stage 1 with pleas to householders to use their clothes dryers at midnight. It was the first "all clear" since January 13.

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