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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

Creditors See SoCal Ed Bankruptcy Sure and Soon

LCG, Sept. 21, 2001--A spokesman for a committee of Southern California Edison Co. creditors said yesterday that involuntary bankruptcy for the insolvent utility was not only a sure thing but would likely occur soon.

"To me it's not a matter of if bankruptcy is going to occur, it's a matter of when," said Brett Barbre, a spokesman for a committee of SoCal Ed's unpaid creditors and those of parent holding company Edison International Inc. "We believe a bankruptcy is imminent, and it will be involuntary."

Two large independent power producers -- companies that purchased power plants from California's investor-owned utilities under a divestiture mandate contained in the state's electric restructuring law -- are known to be seeking a third creditor to join them in a court petition that would force SoCal Ed into involuntary bankruptcy.

Mirant Corp. of Atlanta and Houston-based Reliant Energy Inc. have approached the City of Long Beach and other creditors to join them in the suit. Close to a dozen creditors are ready to join the petition, observers said, as they have reached the limit of their forbearance waiting for California bureaucrats and lawmakers to cobble together a "rescue" package for the beleaguered utility.

When the state legislature adjourned for the year last Saturday without passing a measure to restore SoCal Ed to solvency, creditors began losing hope. California Gov. Gray Davis said he would call the lawmakers back to Sacramento for a special session to deal with the rescue package, but comments by a leading state senator seemed to indicate such a move would be futile.

John Burton, a San Francisco Democrat who is president pro tem of the state Senate, said on learning of the governor's intention to call a special session, said "We should have buried this baby once and for all."

Edison International's chief financial officer, Ted Craver, said earlier this week that the company would "vigorously oppose" involuntary bankruptcy for SoCal Ed. Yesterday, the company's vice president for external affairs, Brian Bennett, said he was hopeful that the creditors would "continue to forbear through the special session."

Bennett added "If they've waited this long, it's a little perplexing why they can't wait another two weeks."

The creditors committee's Barbre noted that Pacific Gas & Electric Co., the state's largest utility, was still in business even though it chose voluntary bankruptcy under Chapter 11 of the federal bankruptcy law in April. "People are looking around at the situation involving PG&E, and they're doing just fine in bankruptcy," he said. "They are on the road to becoming creditworthy once again, while Edison is still floundering."

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