NEI releases statement on FitzPatrick nuclear plant closure

The James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant will close in 2016 or 2017.
The James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant will close in 2016 or 2017. | Courtesy of Entergy Corp.
Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) President and CEO Marvin Fertel issued a statement on Monday following Entergy Corp.’s announcement to close the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant.

Fertel stated that flaws within the competitive electricity generation market have led to four nuclear power facilities needing to close prematurely. He said this is largely due to an undervaluing of the benefits of nuclear energy; because of this, they are not compensated to their full potential and value.

“The nuclear energy industry has been engaging with regulators and other leaders to communicate the wholesale market reforms that are needed,” Fertel said. “The biggest price for the loss of FitzPatrick will be paid by the hundreds of hard-working, highly skilled men and women who work at FitzPatrick, by local communities and by the environment. The time is now for actions that will prevent more nuclear plants from closing.”

The New York facility will be shutdown for an undetermined period of time between the latter half of 2016 and early 2017. Entergy Corp. cites low natural gas prices and unfavorable economic conditions as the reasoning behind the closure decision.

According to the NEI, the FitzPatrick facility provides enough power for approximately 800,000 homes and prevents approximately three million metric tons of carbon emissions on an annual basis.

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