Duke Energy Carolinas announced today that it is abandoning plans to build the Lee Nuclear Station in light of the project's principal designer and contractor declaring bankruptcy. Duke's decision comes on the heels of SCANA Corp. and Santee Cooper abandoning construction on the $18 billion V.C. Summer expansion plan having already spent $9 billion on the project. "With the availability of cost effective generation from natural gas and solar and other technologies we’re able to meet our customers needs in the near term." "But nuclear will continue to be important for the company in our diverse energy mix, now and in future."
SC utilities halt work on 2 NPs dimmiing prospects for nuclear (Steven Mufson, Washington Post) USofA31.Jul.2017
Steven Mufson, Washington Post: The long quest to revive America’s nuclear power industry suffered a crippling setback when two South Carolina utilities halted construction on a pair of reactors that were once expected to showcase a modern design for a new age of nuclear power built at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station. The project has been plagued by billions of dollars of cost overuns, stagnant demand for electricity, competition from cheap natural gas plants ... ..., and the bankruptcy of Westinghouse Electric, the lead contractor and the designer of the AP1000 reactor that was supposed to be the foundation of a smarter, cheaper generation of nuclear power plants.
Reuters, Tom Hals, Emily Flitter: In 2012, construction of a Georgia nuclear power plant stalled for eight months as engineers waited for the right signatures and paperwork needed to ship a section of the plant from a factory hundreds of miles away. The approach - building prefabricated sections of the plants before sending them to the construction sites for assembly - was supposed to revolutionize the industry by making it cheaper and safer to build nuclear plants. But Westinghouse miscalculated the time it would take, and the possible pitfalls involved, in rolling out its innovative AP1000 nuclear plants, according to a close examination by Reuters of the projects. The miscalculations underscore the difficulties facing a global industry that aims to build about 160 reactors and is expected to generate around $740 billion in sales of equipment in services in the coming decade, according to nuclear industry trade groups.
The Economic Times - India: The global nuclear industry is going through a virtual meltdown on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. This is happening even as India is investing heavily in nuclear energy. This collapse of atomic giants offers New Delhi a new opportunity and many in the Indian atomic establishment are silently celebrating this premature death of suitors who were wooing to put tens of atomic plants in India estimated to cost at least $150 billion.