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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

Mirant Looking for Partner to Provide Credit Support

LCG, Mar. 6, 2002--The power producer and energy trading company Mirant Corp. is in talks with potential providers of capital to bolster its trading operations.

Marce Fuller, Mirant's chief executive, confirmed the talks, which he told a Morgan Stanley-sponsored investor conference are being conducted with commercial banks, investment banks and insurance companies. If a deal is reached by June 30, as Mirant intends, the company would no longer need to support its trading by putting up $500 million of its own capital to provide liquidity.

Jeffrey Gildersleeve, an analyst with Argus Research, said, "you're at a disadvantage when you don't have a solid financial backbone. Potential customers might shy away." With its balance sheet under greater scrutiny following the collapse of Enron and retreating from its aggressive development of new power plants, Mirant hopes to improve its credit rating, downgraded to junk status by Moody's in December.

If Moody's were to restore the company's credit rating, it would mark an exceptionally fast reversal from the rating service, Fuller noted. While the company's creditworthiness is being monitored closely, in Gildersleeve's opinion, "it has become consensus that Mirant management has been extremely proactive in shoring up its balance sheet and proving its financial strength." One move in that direction was the sale of German utility Bewag AG, a deal worth about $1.2 billion.
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