WASHINGTON, June 16, 2004 (PRNewswire) — Progress Energy, an operator of nuclear power plants in the Carolinas and Florida, has joined eight other energy companies and two reactor vendors to demonstrate the new construction and operating licensing process for a new nuclear power plant.
The addition of Raleigh, N.C.-based Progress Energy expands the NuStart Energy Development consortium to 11 companies, nine of whom operate 60 nuclear reactors — 58 percent of the 103 U.S. nuclear power plants.
Progress Energy in Raleigh, N.C., has three nuclear power reactors in North Carolina, one in South Carolina and one in Florida. Progress Energy was formed in 2000 following the merger of Carolina Power & Light and Florida Progress. Nuclear energy produces nearly one-third of the electricity used by North Carolina consumers and one-fifth of the nation’s electricity.
“Our country needs new nuclear plants for energy diversity, energy independence and their low environmental impact,” said Marilyn Kray, vice president at Exelon Nuclear in Philadelphia and president of NuStart Energy. “This group of power companies is taking action to preserve nuclear energy for the benefit of the nation’s electricity consumers.”
“Progress Energy needs to maintain a diverse and balanced portfolio of electric generating options, including nuclear energy, to meet the rising demand for electricity in the Southeast,” said C. S. (Scotty) Hinnant, senior vice president and chief nuclear officer for Progress Energy. “Being a part of this consortium helps support the development of the next generation of nuclear plants.”
NuStart Energy, formed March 31, filed a proposal April 26 with the Department of Energy under its Nuclear Power 2010 program designed to get a new nuclear plant under construction by that date. DOE is soliciting industry participants to share the cost of preparing an application for a construction and operating license (COL) — testing the new federal process for licensing advanced nuclear power reactors.
NuStart Energy’s proposal is designed to test the new Nuclear Regulatory Commission licensing process by preparing and filing an application for a COL in 2008. It would be the first license application for a new nuclear plant in 30 years.
None of the consortium companies has committed to build a new nuclear plant. But NuStart Energy does plan to complete detailed engineering design work and to prepare COL applications for two advanced reactor designs, then commits to choose one of the applications and file it for NRC approval. Any individual company or group of companies could then decide to use the license to build a new nuclear plant, based on its assessment of power demand, the price of competing electricity technologies, environmental requirements and other factors.
Other members of NuStart Energy consortium are:
* Constellation Generation Group, a subsidiary of Constellation Energy, Baltimore
* Duke Energy, Charlotte, N.C. * EDF International North America, Washington, a subsidiary of the large
* Entergy Nuclear, Jackson, Miss. * Exelon Generation, Philadelphia * Florida Power & Light Co., Juno Beach, FL * Progress Energy, Raleigh, N.C. * Southern Company, Atlanta * Tennessee Valley Authority, Knoxville * GE Energy’s nuclear operations, Wilmington, N.C. * Westinghouse Electric Co., Pittsburgh