Jim Riccio of Greenpeace makes the claim that economics, not Fukushima has already put the last nail in the coffin of the commercial nuclear power industry. He cites the ballooning cost of the Progress Energy new reactor Levy 1 & 2 complex that went from $2.5 billion to $22.5 billion dollars in construction costs over a few short years. Similar problems plague nuclear power construction in other countries as Areva saw the costs for their EPR reactor builds in France and Finland increase similarly.
Progress Energy has since moved to cancel the 2 reactor project.
Entergy also suspended the reactor projects at River Bend and Grand Gulf in 2011
UniStar suspended the new reactor project at Nine Mile Point in 2009
Exelon withdrew applications with the NRC for the Victoria Station nuclear plant in 2010
TVA cancelled two new reactors to be built at the Bellafonte nuclear site in 2009
AmerenUE had their application suspended by the NRC in 2009
A 3rd unit at Calvert Cliffs has been considered ineligible by the NRC in 2011
Five out of seven were ended by the operator over increasing costs or concerns about power demand being too low for them to be able to sell power at a profitable rate. This is at the same time the nuclear power industry is telling the media the US “can’t live without nuclear power” and uses distorted numbers to make the percentage of the US power mix that is nuclear look higher than it truly is.
Update: Senator Markey wrote in US News about the financial aspects of commercial nuclear power and how the US taxpayers are being forced to fund it through some expensive investments that could post big losses for taxpayer dollars.
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