Premature closings: Exelon accelerates nuclear shut downs

power plant

June 5, 2016 – – Exelon Corp. has closed three of its 11 reactors in Illinois early — the single-reactor Clinton Power Station and both reactors at the Quad Cities Generating Station. The company planned to shut down the Clinton station on June 1, 2017, and Quad Cities a year later.

These closings signal a trend in the industry.

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“…our nation is losing top-performing nuclear power plants due to flawed electricity market conditions. In the process, we are moving farther away from achieving our nation’s ambitious clean air commitments,” said Marvin Fertel, president and chief executive officer at the Nuclear Energy Institute.

“It’s ironic that flawed energy policy and electricity market policies are leading to the shutdown of one of our most effective carbon-reduction tools at the same time that the United States is hosting the global Clean Energy Ministerial forum to promote policies and share best practices to accelerate the global transition to clean energy.” Marvin Fertel said.

The premature closures will lead to a loss of 1,500 direct jobs, 4,200 indirect jobs and $1.2 billion in annual economic activity, according to reports from the state. The Clinton and Quad Cities facilities power more than 2.5 million Illinois homes.

“The closure of Clinton and Quad-Cities will be felt acutely by the state and significantly hinder Illinois’ standing as an environmental leader: Illinois counts on nuclear plants to provide 92 percent of its carbon-free electricity.

The absence of Clinton and Quad-Cities will make it near impossible for the state to reach its carbon reduction goals, including those put forth by the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan,” said Nuclear Matters co-chair and former Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN).

“We are hopeful that the push to properly value these plants via passage of the Next Generation Energy Plan (NGEP) continues as the Illinois legislature meets throughout the month of June. Passage of the NGEP would send a signal to the rest of the state, and the country, that policymakers are taking action to ensure that our energy policies have caught up with our country’s environmental goals and priorities.”

Mary Greeley News