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Iowa nuclear power station to close in 2020, five years early

Owner of Iowa’s lone nuclear plant plans to shutter it by 2020   Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register July 27, 2018 

NextEra Energy, owner of the Duane Arnold Energy Center, says it will retire Iowa’s lone nuclear plant in late 2020, five years earlier than anticipated.

The Florida-based utility said Alliant Energy, the plant’s largest power user, has agreed to pay NextEra $110 million to shorten its agreement to purchase power from Duane Arnold.

Alliant said it will partially replace the nuclear energy with wind energy from NextEra and expects new energy deals will save Iowa customers nearly $300 million over 21 years, even after the utility pays NextEra to end its contract early.

Alliant Energy’s plan must go through the Iowa Utilities Board for approval. Duane Arnold, which is located near Cedar Rapids, was licensed to operate until 2034. ……..

Bill Cherrier, CEO of Central Iowa Power Cooperative said low-cost natural gas and the declining cost of renewable energy such as wind and solar have created challenges for nuclear power generators.

NextEra said it plans to invest about $650 million in existing and new renewable energy generation in Iowa by the end of 2020. That includes a $250 million investment to repower four wind facilities, providing about 340 megawatts of electricity for Alliant’s Iowa customers.

Repowering these facilities is expected to create 200 new construction jobs, NextEra said, and will extend payments to landowners and tax revenues for local communities for decades.

NextEra said it’s evaluating redevelopment opportunities at Duane Arnold, including the “construction of new solar energy, battery storage or natural gas facilities.” https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/money/business/2018/07/27/duane-arnold-nuclear-power-plant-close-alliant-energy-nextera-wind-power-renewables/848824002/

 

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July 28, 2018 - Posted by | business and costs, USA

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