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NuStart Energy Development


NuStart Energy Development is the largest and most well-funded of the consortia seeking new operating licenses, and its formation was announced on March 31, 2004.

NuStart works with two nuclear reactor vendors, GE and Westinghouse, and uses their reactor models as preferred candidates for member companies: the General Electric Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor (ESBWR) and the Westinghouse Advanced Passive 1000 reactor (AP1000).

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced on November 4, 2004, that the NuStart consortium would receive an initial subsidy of $4 million, with more going to the Dominion-led consortium. In May 2005 it signed a final deal with DOE for a 50% cost-share agreement, with taxpayers contributing $260 million and the consortium as a whole putting up an equal amount for the paperwork on two new nuclear reactors. Those reactors will be pursued at Bellefonte, AL and Grand Gulf, MS.

Government involvement falls under the Nuclear Power 2010 program. NuStart is composed of the following companies:

DTE Energy

DTE Energy is a Detroit-based diversified energy company. One of its largest operating units, Detroit Edison, applied for a COL to build an ESBWR in Fermi, Michigan in September 2008.

Duke Energy

Duke joined the consortium on April 25, 2004 and already owns three nuclear plants in the Carolinas. It announced its intent to apply for a Construction and Operating License in March 2006 to build a new reactor in South Carolina. On December 14, 2007, they submitted a Combined Construction and Operating License to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for two new AP1000s in Cherokee County, SC. The site is called William States Lee III, and there are no reactors currently at this site.

EDF International North America

EDF is a subsidiary of Électricité de France, EDF; it owns shares in several U.S. reactors, 9.5% of Constellation Energy, as well as 58 nuclear plants in France.

Entergy Nuclear

Entergy operates over 40 plants, 7 of which are nuclear. It filed an application for a COL at its Grand Gulf nuclear facility in Port Gibson, Mississippi on February 27, 2008. In April 2007, Entergy was issued an Early Site Permit for the Grand Gulf site. In September 2008, Entergy applied for another ESBWR at its River Bend nuclear plant in Louisiana, which currently houses two reactors.

Exelon Nuclear

Exelon is the largest nuclear operator in the U.S. and a consortium leader. It was granted an Early Site Permit at its Clinton nuclear facility in Clinton, Illinois in March 2007. It also filed an application for a COL in Victoria County, TX for two ESBWRs in early September 2008.

Florida Power & Light

FP&L operates several nuclear power plants, two in Florida (St. Lucie and Turkey Point) and one in New Hampshire (Seabrook). FP&L purchased Point Beach Plant in Wisconsin in October 2007. They have recently proposed building two new reactors (AP1000) at Turkey Point, though they have yet to submit the application to the NRC.

Progress Energy

Progress Energy owns and operates four nuclear plants: two in North Carolina (Brunswick and Harris); one in South Carolina (Robinson); and one in Florida (Crystal River). Progress Energy has also applied for COLs for four new AP1000 reactors: two at Levy County (which would be a brand new plant) and two at Shearon Harris (an expansion project).

SCANA Corporation

South Carolina Electric & Gas Company (SCE&G), principal subsidiary of SCANA Corporation, applied for a COL for two AP1000 reactors at Virgil C. Summer nuclear plant in South Carolina in March 2008.

Southern Company

One of the largest southern utilities. Southern Company owns and operates a total of 6 nuclear reactors, 2 in Alabama and 4 in Georgia. In December 2004, it requested $245,000 from DOE to help fund a study as to whether the company should apply for an Early Site Permit. That evidently turned out well, because it has announced plans to seek both an Early Site Permit and a Combined Operating License at its Vogtle plant in Georgia.

Tennessee Valley Authority

TVA operates three nuclear plants, including Browns Ferry Unit 1. That reactor was shut down in 1985 due to lingering concerns about a fire years earlier and the TVA's inability to convince the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) that the reactor could be operated safely. TVA joined the consortium on April 25, 2004, and its Bellefonte, Alabama site will be host to one of the new reactors being sought by NuStart.

General Electric

GE designs and manufactures commercial nuclear reactors. Its ESBWR design—still seeking approval from the NRC—will be pursued at the Grand Gulf site in Mississippi.

Westinghouse

Westinghouse is a subsidiary of the British nuclear company BNFL; it designs and manufactures commercial nuclear reactors. Its AP1000 design—still seeking approval from the NRC—will be pursued at the Bellefonte site in Alabama.

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