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Letter: Cost overruns at Georgia Power nuclear plant arent so easy to overlook
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Frank Frederick’s letter of April 29 forgives the nuclear industry’s cost overruns and accidents.

He writes that nuclear power has “saved billions of dollars in the cost of electricity. ... They have been tremendous economic success stories for every utility, with the exception of Three-Mile Island.”

Gosh. You could say nuclear power has been an economic success in Japan — with one, or make that three, exceptions.

Despite Madison Avenue’s slick PR campaigns for nuclear, Wall Street refuses to buy in. Nuclear has never been economic for the public, as customers saddled with Tennessee Valley Authority’s $24 billion debt, the bulk of which is for failed nuclear projects, well know.

Frederick is right about Georgia Power’s economic success with nuclear, however. Georgia Power is profiting from constructing its new Vogtle 3 and 4 reactors with taxpayer and ratepayer money paid upfront. The project was supposed to be online at the beginning of April, but is only 25 percent complete and nearly $2 billion over budget.

Yet despite a downturn in sales and poor construction performance, a compliant Public Service Commission has allowed Georgia Power to post 20 percent higher profits in the five years that Vogtle has been under construction.

We can, and should, stop investing in Georgia Power’s profit-making nuclear schemes. The company is overbuilt and electricity demand is slow despite the recent shuttering of 2,000 megawatts of coal plants.

Meanwhile, solar power and wind power are proving themselves with record growth and rapidly declining cost while energy storage technology development is solving the intermittency problem. Please, sirs, can we have some more in Georgia?

Glenn Carroll
Nuclear Watch South, Atlanta

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