NY Gov. Cuomo: State will fight Entergy plans to shutter FitzPatrick nuclear plant
- The governor of New York intends to fight plans to close the 838 MW James A. FitzPatrick nuclear plant, including "every legal and regulatory avenue" in effort to save more than 600 jobs at the facility.
- Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a statement saying the company's fiscal bottom line could not be the only criteria used in making the decision.
- Earlier this week, Entergy announced it intends to shutter the plant in 2016 or 2017, citing low natural gas prices that have put the squeezeon its nuclear generation fleet.
Despite months of negotiations between Entergy and New York, after the company signalled it was considering closing the FitzPatrick nuclear plant, the sides failed to come to an agreement. While New York will also have to deal with how to replace the generation, Gov. Cuomo issued a statement saying the state will also focus on the employment issues.
“The closing of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant will devastate the lives of the more than 600 employees and their families," Cuomo said. "Good corporate citizenship must appreciate that there are many factors that count as the 'bottom line.' The State of New York will pursue every legal and regulatory avenue in an attempt to stop Entergy’s actions and its callous disregard for their skilled and loyal workforce.”
Entergy filed plans on Monday with the New York ISO, to close the plan in either late 2016 or early 2017. The company said it chose to close the plant because low natural gas prices were creating unfavorable market conditions.
"Given the financial challenges our merchant power plants face from sustained wholesale power price declines and other unfavorable market conditions, we have been assessing each asset. As part of this review, we previously announced the closure of the Pilgrim Nuclear Generating Station in Massachusetts and have now decided that despite good operational performance, market conditions require us to also close the FitzPatrick nuclear plant," said Entergy CEO Leo Denault.
FitzPatrick has generated power since 1975, and if it is closed then Entergy's Indian Point Energy Center will be its only power generation facility operating in New York. The company retired another nuclear plant — the 620 MW Vermont Yankee in Vernon, Vermont — at the end of 2014.
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