Worst Week For U.S. Nuclear Power Industry Since Fukishima?
Worst Week For U.S. Nuclear Power Industry Since Fukishima? PR Newswire May 7 After the Non-Renaissance: Experts to Recap Latest Major Setbacks … and Outlook … for Beleaguered Industry WASHINGTON, D.C.///NEWS ADVISORY///Two reactors dropped in North Carolina … two reactors facing the ax in California … two reactors blocked on foreign-ownership grounds in Texas … and the passage in Florida of the first legislative rollback of advance cost recovery financing of reactors. All of these negative developments for nuclear power happened last week and they will be the focus of a live, two-way phone-based news conference (with full Q&A) at 1:30 p.m. EDT on May 8, 2013. In a matter of just three days, the following things happened last week: o Duke Energy announced Thursday that it will abandon plans for two nuclear reactors at the Shearson Harris nuclear plant in North Carolina. (Earlier this year, Duke announced that it would not repair the damaged Crystal River reactor in Florida.) o Also on Thursday, the Florida Senate sent a bill to the governor revising a 2006 law allowing utilities to charge for nuclear reactors that may never be built. To date, the "advance cost recovery" provision has permitted Florida Power & Light Co. and Duke Energy (formerly Progress Energy Florida) to collect more than $1.4 billion from customers. o Southern California Edison told investors Tuesday that one or both reactors at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Stations (SONGS) face permanent shutdown if the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) does not move immediately to permit the damaged reactors to go back online. Also last week, a SONGS whistleblower released a photo showing a portion of the reactor project that had been repaired with plastic sheeting, masking tape and broomsticks. See http://www.upi.com/blog/2013/05/02/Nuclear-power-plant-held-together-with-masking-tape-broomsticks/7181367502559/. o Also on Tuesday: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission ruled that a partnership between NRG Energy Inc. and Toshiba Corp. to build the pair of proposed South Texas Project reactors violates a U.S. law prohibiting foreign control of nuclear power plants. In March, the NRC failed to strike down a similar finding that the proposed Calvert Cliffs-3 reactor project in Maryland is dominated by foreign companies. News event speakers will be: o Peter A. Bradford, adjunct professor at the Vermont Law School, a former member of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), and a former utility commission chair in New York and Maine; o Mark Cooper, senior fellow for economic analysis, Institute for Energy and the Environment, Vermont Law School, and author of "Policy Challenges of Nuclear Reactor Construction, Cost Escalation and Crowding Out Alternatives" (2009); and o Daniel Hirsch, lecturer on Nuclear Policy at the University of California, Santa Cruz, president of the California-based Committee to Bridge the Gap, a nuclear policy nonprofit organization, and co-author of a recent study about the severity of San Onofre's steam generator problems. TO PARTICIPATE: You can join this live, phone-based news conference (with full, two-way Q&A) at 1:30 p.m. EDT on May 8, 2013 by dialing 1 (800) 860-2442. Ask for the "worst week ever" news event. CAN'T PARTICIPATE?: A streaming audio replay of this news event will be available by 5 p.m. EDT on May 8, 2013 at http://188.8.131.52/worstweek.html. MEDIA CONTACTS: Leslie Maloy, (703) 276-3256 or firstname.lastname@example.org; and Alex Frank, (703) 276-3264 or email@example.com. /PRNewswire-USNewswire -- May 7, 2013/ SOURCE Peter Bradford, adjunct professor, Vermont Law School and Mark Cooper, senior fellow for economic analysis, Institute for Energy and the Environment, Vermont Law School