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FirstEnergy Takes Next Step In Deactivation Of Its 3 Nuclear Power Plants

FirstEnergy Solutions Inc. Wednesday announced it has taken its latest step in the regulatory process leading to the deactivation of its three nuclear power plants beginning in 2020.

FES submitted to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission its Certified Fuel Handler Training and Retraining Program, as required under the NRC's decommissioning process. The filing details the training program for professionals who will supervise the removal and on-site storage of fuel from the nuclear plants.

FES announced on March 28, 2018, that it would deactivate the plants on the following schedule:

-- Beaver Valley Power Station, Shippingport, Pennsylvania, Unit 1 May 2021 and Unit 2 October 2021

-- Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station, Oak Harbor, Ohio, May 2020;

-- Perry Nuclear Power Plant, Perry, Ohio, May 2021

"Today's NRC submission is a necessary milestone for us but not a welcome one," said Don Moul, FES President and Chief Nuclear Officer. "Our nuclear plants provide important environmental, economic and fuel-diversity benefits to our region, but we cannot continue to operate them without state-level policy relief in Ohio and Pennsylvania or immediate and significant market reforms that provide meaningful compensation for the unique attributes nuclear generation provides."

The total capacity of the nuclear plants to be deactivated is 4,048 megawatts (MW). In 2017, the nuclear units contributed approximately 65 percent of the electricity produced by the FES generating fleet.

The two Ohio plants represent 14 percent of Ohio's electric generation capacity and 90 percent of its carbon emissions-free capacity.

"We intend to work with Ohio and Pennsylvania officials towards a solution that will enable these plants to continue contributing to cleaner air and regional energy security," Moul said, adding, "In the meantime we will move forward with the required steps towards deactivation."

A solution must be reached by mid-2019, when FES must either purchase the fuel required for Davis-Besse's next refueling or proceed with the shutdown.

(Photo: Beaver Valley.)


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[Posted: August 15, 2018]


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