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Another city bites the dust in regard to Utah’s NuScam small nuclear reactors plan

Seven Utah cities have now bailed out of an Idaho nuclear power project, Salt Lake Tribune,  By Taylor Stevens-30 Oct 20,

Three more Utah cities voted this week not to move forward with a first-of-its kind nuclear power project that proponents have pitched as the future of clean energy but that opponents have lined up against over concerns about financial risk.

Beaver, Bountiful and Heber are the latest municipalities to exit the small modular nuclear reactor pursuit, following in the footsteps of Murray, Kaysville, Lehi and Logan, which also backed out in recent weeks. ………

The Heber Light and Power Board, which voted 5-1 to get out of the project, and the Bountiful City Council, which unanimously made the decision to back out, both did so this week largely over concerns about the subscription rate of the nuclear energy pursuit.

“There’s enough things wrong with this project that it made it really scary,” said Bart Miller, Heber Light and Power’s chief financial officer. “We’re just a bunch of little utilities in the state of Utah trying to do a $6 billion nuclear power plant.”………

Bountiful City Councilman Richard Higginson said the leaders there had similar concerns, and felt too many of the development and construction costs were falling to a small number of municipalities…….

Costs have been one of the main concerns for several of the cities that have backed out over the last few weeks, as the project’s projected price tag has ballooned significantly, from $4.5 billion a few years ago to around $6 billion now. Opponents have also raised concerns about time and cost overruns, safety considerations and an uncertain regulatory environment.

The Utah Taxpayers Association has been among the critics of the project, arguing that municipal power companies should not act as a “seed investor” for the new technology, a responsibility it’s argued should lie with the private sector.

Environmental groups, such as the Healthy Environment Alliance of Utah, have also raised concerns about the radioactive waste that would be generated by the project.

Cities participating in the Carbon Free Power Project through the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems — a consortium of municipally owned power systems in Utah and several other Western states that has partnered with NuScale Power to study and create the nuclear technology — have until Saturday to decide whether to stay in the project or back out.  https://www.sltrib.com/news/politics/2020/10/29/seven-utah-cities-have/

October 31, 2020 - Posted by | business and costs, politics, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, USA

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