Scana Reactors Face New Delays and $200 Million Additional Costs

Scana Corp., the owner of South Carolina’s largest utility, says the twin reactors it’s building in the state face new delays and about $200 million in added costs as a subcontractor struggles to meet deadlines and quality standards.

Scana sees the commercial start for its first reactor under construction near Columbia, South Carolina, slipping to the end of 2017 or early 2018, from March 2017, Steve Byrne, chief operating officer of its South Carolina Electric & Gas unit, told analysts during a webcast today. The second reactor will also be delayed beyond its May 2018 target for producing power, and neither Scana nor its construction partners can say by how long.

Chicago Bridge & Iron Co. NV has overhauled management and production practices at the Lake Charles, Louisiana, factory supplying prefabricated modules to Scana’s Summer project as well as the Vogtle nuclear plant that Southern Co. is building in Georgia, Jeff Merrifield, a senior vice-president with the Hague, Netherlands-based company said on the webcast.

The factory, which Chicago Bridge & Iron gained through its acquisition of Shaw Group Inc. this year, recently shipped some modules ahead of schedule, Merrifield said. The large concrete and iron components will be welded together onsite to form the core of the new plants.

The delays are the latest setback as Scana, based in Cayce, South Carolina, and Atlanta-based Southern build the first new U.S. reactors to be licensed since the Three Mile Island accident in 1979. Southern in February said its Vogtle project was running about 18 months behind schedule because of licensing delays and early construction glitches.

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