HARTFORD, Conn. (CBS Connecticut) – Governor Dannel Malloy has signed an executive order calling for an assessment of the long-term viability of the Millstone Nuclear Power Station in Waterford. The order follows the failure of legislation this year that would have allowed Millstone to sell electricity in Connecticut via long-term contract– a practice currently used for renewable energy sources.
The owner of the plant, Virginia-based Dominion Energy, said the legislation was needed to keep Millstone competitive. Opponents argued the plant is the nation’s most profitable nuclear generating facility, and the legislation was designed to boost profits further. Following the legislation’s failure, Dominion announced that it had launched an “economic assessment” of the plant.
“Dominion appreciates the Governor’s leadership in helping to ensure Millstone continues to provide critical energy, environmental and economic benefits for Connecticut. However, the time for a study without action has passed,” said Paul Koonce, CEO of Dominion Energy’s Power Generation Group, in a written statement. “Without action this year, the prospects for continued operation of Millstone diminish.”
The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority will be responsible for the review.
The agencies will also examine the role of nuclear plants, large-scale hydropower, energy storage, renewable energy and demand reduction measures play in helping Connecticut meet carbon emission targets while maintaining the reliability of Connecticut’s electric grid. The study will look at other issues, including potential multi-state collaborations.
The findings of the review are due to the governor and legislature prior to the start of the 2018 regular session of the General Assembly.