Tag Archives: Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

GEORGIA: Sinking into the Vogtle Vortex

The expansion of a Georgia nuclear power plant that fired up dreams for a carbon-free nuclear renaissance in the U.S. has turned into a quagmire of setbacks, financial woes, uncertainty and frustration.
Protest_smby Pam Wright
5/23/17: Cornelia Stumpf has had enough.

The Savannah resident joins more than 2 million other Georgia Power customers who collectively pay a reported $23 million a month for the construction of two new and highly controversial nuclear reactors that may never produce a single kilowatt of energy.

The new reactors at the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant, 30 minutes south of Augusta, were the first approved in the U.S. in 30 years, and they were expected to revive the nation’s nuclear power industry, ushering in an era of carbon-free energy to help control climate change. But the expansion at Plant Vogtle has become an expensive boondoggle for the company and its customers.

“What is upsetting to me is, in the end, I’m just one person and it’s added up to $700 in the six years since they began charging it,” says Stumpf, a conscientious consumer of energy who is speaking from her office on a 90-degree afternoon in May with the air conditioner off.

Georgia Power, a subsidiary of the Southern Company, implemented the 7 percent surcharge in 2011 after lawmakers gave the utility permission to charge customers for the construction of the project. The charge appears on consumer’s bill as “Nuclear Construction Cost Recovery.” So far Georgia Power has reportedly collected nearly $2 billion from the surcharge.

Read the whole article: The Weather Channel

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Troubled nuclear plant costs rising for Savannah residents

Georgia_Power_ratepayerby Mary Landers
SAVANNAH 4/8/2017: The costs for Georgia Power’s troubled Plant Vogtle are adding up, but not for the utility or its investors.

Instead, ratepayers are already paying for the two new nuclear reactors, both of which may never produce a watt of electricity. How much have customers already dished out? For southside Savannah customer Cornelia Stumpf, the Vogtle bills already total more than $500.

Read the whole story: Savannah Morning News

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Vogtle’s Nuclear Expansion in Question after Westinghouse Bankruptcy Filing

vogtle-3by Gloria Tatum
(APN) ATLANTA 4/5/17— Westinghouse Electric Corporation, the designer and builder of the AP1000 nuclear reactors under construction in Georgia and South Carolina, has filed for Chapter 11 reorganization bankruptcy, putting the future of the nuclear power industry in jeopardy.

Clean energy advocates hope this bankruptcy will be a wooden stake in the heart of the so-called “nuclear renaissance” that finally kills it, including the incomplete new reactor units 3 and 4 at Plant Vogtle.

Read the whole story: Atlanta Progressive News

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Renewables rise in Georgia Power plan

Southern-AGL.JPEG-0b4bdby Russell Grantham
ATLANTA 2/13/16 — Renewable fuels are poised to grow from a footnote into a small but meaningful part of the picture at Georgia’s biggest electric utility.

By 2020 solar, wind, biomass and hydro will account for 10 percent of Georgia Power’s fuel mix, according to a new long-term plan the company recently filed with state regulators. That’s up from about 7 percent this year, or just 2 percent not counting hydro. In 2005, non-hydro renewables were not even counted in the mix.

Critics say the pace is still too slow. And at least one questions the utility’s overall goal of boosting its capacity buffer — the extra juice it could generate during a severe heat wave or power outages — at a time when demand has been flattened by slower economic growth and better efficiency.

Read the whole article: Atlanta Journal-Constitution

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Are our Georgia Power bills set to be nuked?

022215-nuke-price-bs8by Matt Kempner
ATLANTA 2/8/16 — Warm up your checkbook and get your debit and credit cards ready. Reckoning day is coming on the most gigantic construction project in Georgia and, in particular, on its blown budget.

This spring the expansion of the Vogtle nuclear power plant near Augusta was supposed to be finished, with the first of two new reactors cranking out electricity for businesses and homes all over Georgia.

Not going to happen.

Read the whole article: Atlanta Journal-Constitution

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Georgians, get ready for a power bill sticker shock

vogtle73015by Tom Crawford
Gainesville, GA 12/16/15 — In the 1970s, Georgia Power started work on two nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle near Waynesboro. It was initially estimated that the two units would cost $660 million and take about seven years to build. In fact, the project took nine more years and cost more than $8 billion by the time the reactors actually started generating electricity.

The lesson should have been clear: Nuclear power is very expensive and has significant safety issues, as well. Surely, Georgia Power and the Public Service Commission would be extremely leery about ever approving such a project again.

Read the whole article: Gainesville Times

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The state creating the most green jobs is…Georgia?

Paying For Sunshineby Anne Fisher

Decatur Self Storage’s array of solar cells Photograph by David Tulis — AP

7/7/15 — An unlikely political alliance in the Peach State has produced a big spike in solar projects.

Green employment in the U.S. is tiny, but it keeps picking up steam. In the first three months of 2015, about 40 new renewable energy and clean transportation projects were launched in 19 states, creating more than 9,800 jobs.

That’s not many, but it’s almost double the number created in the first quarter last year, notes a new report from Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2), a nonprofit, nonpartisan business group that tracks green employment. Solar power openings grew the most, adding about 6,600 jobs nationwide — about 2,000 of them from five new projects in Georgia.

Read the whole article: Fortune

 

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Coalition of conservatives, liberals fight for more Florida solar power

b4s_solarpetition011415_12497090_8colby Ivan Penn
TAMPA 1/13/15 — Imagine the Christian Coalition and the tea party joining hands with liberals and environmentalists.

Add to the Kumbaya moment Libertarians and Florida’s retail business federation.

They all plan to unite this morning for a news conference in Tallahassee about their campaign to allow those in Florida who generate electricity from the sun to sell that power directly to other consumers. Right now, that’s illegal here.

The coalition, which has dubbed itself Floridians for Solar Choice, has crafted a petition that was approved for circulation last month. They’ll need 683,149 signatures by Feb. 1, 2016, to get the question on the ballot for the 2016 election.

For some it’s ideological. For others, such as the retailers, it’s pure economics.

Read the whole article: Tampa Bay Times

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