PSC APPROVES TRANSFER OF SCRIBA, WAYNE COUNTY POWER PLANTS TO NEW OWNER


A nuclear-power plant operating in Scriba in Oswego County. The New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) on Thursday announced it had accepted a joint proposal for the corporate transfer of ownership of nuclear-power plants in Scriba and in Wayne County. (Photo credit: zoeyadvertising.com)



SCRIBA, N.Y. — The Nine Mile Point and James A. FitzPatrick nuclear-power plants in Scriba will soon have a new owner.


The New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) on Thursday announced it had accepted a joint proposal for the corporate transfer of ownership of nuclear-power plants in Scriba in Oswego County and in Wayne County.


The agreement protects thousands of jobs and keeps the nuclear plants on “sound financial footing,” the PSC contended in a news release. It also provides $331 million in financial support for New York’s nuclear facilities.

The entities involved in the agreement include Exelon Corporation and Exelon Generation Company, LLC; PSC staff; New York State Attorney General’s office; the Syracuse–based Alliance for a Green Economy, and the Long Island Power Authority.


After the transaction closes, Exelon Generation will become part of a new, independent, publicly traded entity that owns the two-unit, 1,918 megawatt (MW) Nine Mile Point and the 842 MW James A. FitzPatrick nuclear power plant, both in Scriba; —along with the 579 MW R.E. Ginna nuclear power plant in Ontario in Wayne County.


In total, the power plants generate enough “clean, reliable” energy for more than 2.6 million average-sized homes, PSC said. The new owner will use the same workforce that currently operates the sites, the commission added.


Exelon Generation (NYSE: EXC) has operated both the Fitzpatrick and Nine Mile Point plants for several years. Exelon secured the ownership of the Fitzpatrick plant in March 2017 after the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approved the transfer from Entergy Nuclear Operations. At the time, the agreement to continue operation of the Fitzpatrick plant saved about 600 jobs.


The plants will be spun off by the current owner — along with reactors in other states — and will become the core business of an independent, publicly traded, and “well-capitalized” holding company that “directly and indirectly” owns and operates merchant generation and serves customers in competitive electricity and gas markets, per the PSC.


The current operating licenses for the nuclear facilities expire in 2029 for Nine Mile Point 1; 2034 for FitzPatrick; 2046 for Nine Mile Point 2; and 2029 for Ginna. The NRC and the PSC required funds be set aside to assist with the decommissioning of the facilities and the restoration of the sites. Exelon subsidiaries also own and operate power reactors in other states, including Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Illinois.


As part of the joint proposal, Exelon and Exelon Generation agreed to stipulations that included continued maintenance and staffing of emergency-operation facilities within New York State.


They also included depositing an additional $15 million in the remedial trust fund for Nine Mile Point Unit 2 in early 2022.


The agreement also has them maintaining a minimum trust fund balance of $144 million per unit — or $576 million in total across the four units — and providing a 20-year projected backstop timeline for decommissioning following end of licensed term.


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