NRC Issues Subsequent License Renewals for First Time to Nuclear Reactors in Florida

LCG, December 11, 2019--The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff recently approved Florida Power & Light's (FPL's) application for an additional 20 years of operation for Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Units 3 and 4. This is the first time the NRC has issued renewed licenses authorizing reactor operation from 60 to 80 years. The subsequent (or second) license renewals (SLRs) for Turkey Point Unit 3 and Unit 4 now expire on July 19, 2052 and April 10, 2053, respectively.

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New York Poised to Close Last Coal-fire Power Plant

LCG, December 4, 2019--The last operating coal-fired power plant in New York is moving toward closure shortly. Last month, Somerset Operating Company, a subsidiary of Riesling Power LLC, submitted a request to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to waive the state's required, 180-day notice to close the Somerset Station, allowing the facility to be retired on February 15, 2020. Closure is contingent on approvals by both NYSPSC and the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), which will evaluate if it will cause an adverse effect on grid reliability.

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Industry News

Idaho Power to Boost Electric Rates 23 Percent

LCG, May 2, 2001--The Idaho Public Utilities Commission yesterday granted the largest electricity rate hike in the history of Idaho Power Co. and there may be another increase in rates this summer. The new rates will take effect immediately.

In a unanimous ruling, the PUC gave Idaho Power permission to collect $168.3 million of the $227.4 million the company had asked for in its annual power cost adjustment filing, essentially boosting overall rates by about 25 percent.

Idaho Power chief executive Jan Packwood acknowledged "This is one whopping rate increase," but noted that the bulk of the increase about three-quarters of it was to cover the high costs of wholesale power which have soared as a result of the deregulation fiasco in California.

"We understand this will create hardships for some people," Packwood said. "It certainly will have ramifications for the Idaho economy as well."

The PUC will hold hearing again this summer to see if another rate hike is justified, and it could be, given the expected high cost of wholesale power likely to result when California tries to avoid rolling blackouts by having state agencies purchase power in the spot market.

"I hope everyone recognizes by now that we are in the midst of an unprecedented energy crisis, and during such times it is essential that rates for customers not be set artificially low," Packwood said. "We anticipate that prices will remain high throughout this year and into next. It is in no one's interest ifwholesale prices are sky-high and not reflected in the actual prices that customers pay."

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