Georgia Power Vows to Complete Vogtle 3 and 4
The Georgia Public Service Commission unanimously approved the company's recommendation Dec. 21 to complete the first new nuclear units in the United States in 30 years.
Georgia Power announced Dec. 21 that it had received unanimous approval from the Georgia Public Service Commission to complete the Vogtle 3 & 4 nuclear power units near Waynesboro, Ga. – the nation's first new nuclear units in 30 years. The new units are co-owned by Georgia Power, Oglethorpe Power, MEAG Power, and Dalton Utilities, expected to be online in November 2021 (Unit 3) and November 2022 (Unit 4) and generate enough electricity to power approximately 500,000 homes and businesses.
"The decision to complete Vogtle 3 & 4 is important for Georgia's energy future and the United States," said Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power. "The Georgia Public Service Commission has shown leadership in making this complex and difficult decision and recognized that the Vogtle expansion is key to ensuring that our state has affordable and reliable energy today that will support economic growth now and for generations to come."
The decision followed months of review and evaluation of a unified recommendation presented to the Georgia PSC on August 31 by the Vogtle co-owners, following the bankruptcy filing by former primary Vogtle contractor Westinghouse in March and subsequent rejection of the fixed-price contract. Georgia Power said the decision "continues to protect customers with new penalties for delays and cost increases in addition to penalties included in the previous stipulated agreement approved earlier this year by the Georgia PSC. Under this amended structure, shareholders will see a significant impact of approximately $750 million through November 2022 and the company has agreed to further reductions if the project does not meet the revised and approved in-service dates. Additionally, as a result, the amount paid by customers will be reduced by more than $1.7 billion during the construction period."
"Our responsibility is to our customers first, and we remain focused on fulfilling our commitment to them to deliver a new energy source that will put downward pressure on rates for 60 to 80 years once the new units are on line," Bowers said.
Construction has continued without interruption at the Vogtle site since the Westinghouse bankruptcy. Southern Nuclear, the nuclear operating subsidiary which operates the existing units in Georgia, is now the project manager at the site with Bechtel managing daily construction.