Consumers could end up paying as much as $3.9 billion a year for nuclear subsidies in the Northeast, according to a new report from Bloomberg Intelligence.
Emboldened by successes in Illinois and New York, Ohio, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and New Jersey are looking at creating nuclear subsidies.
- If all of those measures passed they could provide subsidies for as much a total of 28 GW of nuclear power.
Illinois in late December legislated a $235 million a year subsidy for two Exelon nuclear plants. The Illinois zero emission credit was patterned on a similar measure approved by the New York Public Service Commission.
Connecticut recently introduced legislation that would provide long term contracts similar to those available to renewable resources in the state for Dominion Energy’s Millstone nuclear plant.
And, according to Bloomberg Intelligence, Ohio, New Jersey and Pennsylvania are looking at implementing measures to help economically distressed nuclear plants in their states.
"I think there’s a good chance it will pass in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Connecticut,” Kit Konolige, a senior analyst for Bloomberg Intelligence told Bloomberg Markets. "The losers would be customers and rival plants," Konolige said.
The recent suite of nuclear subsidies are facing pushback. New York's rules sparked a court challenge, while other stakeholders are following suit. PJM's independent market monitor filed in opposition to the Illinois ZECs, arguing they "unlawfully intruded" on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's exclusive authority over wholesale interstate electricity sales under the Federal Power Act. It's a similar argument used by generators opposing New York's subsidy plan.