Saturday, February 17, 2007

Florida To Encourage Nuclear Power

Will FPL Switch To Nuclear Power Generation In Glades?

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- The Florida Public Service Commission has adopted new rules this week to encourage the construction of additional nuclear-powered electric generation within the state. The rules are designed to spur investment in Florida's energy future and promote the development of nuclear power as a viable energy source.  Florida Power and Light, despite many environmental objections from area residents, is moving forward with its plans to construct a mega-kilowatt coal fired power plant on the west shore of Lake Okeechobee near Lakeport.

Although nuclear plants are costly to construct, they are typically the least expensive type of power plant to operate. The proposed rules would permit investor-owned electric utilities to request partial recovery of the planning and construction costs of a nuclear power plant prior to commercial operation of the plant, as directed by state statute. Early recovery should reduce risks and encourage financial investment in nuclear power plants by allowing prudent costs to be recouped as they are incurred, says the Public Service Commission.  Phasing in cost recovery will mitigate the "rate shock" associated with recovering all the capital costs at the time a plant begins operating. Increased use of nuclear power lessens the impact on customers of storm disruptions to fossil fuel supplies, ensuring greater energy security for Florida, according to a press release from the PSC.

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