Could Clean Energy Credits Determine Future of Oswego County Power Plants?

Talks are underway in an effort to try and save Oswego County's struggling power plants, and the hundreds of jobs that come with them.

FitzPatrick Nuclear Plant in Scriba is currently slated to close next January due to financial hardship. But now Exelon says it is in talks with Entergy to buy the plant, as long as clean energy credits are passed.

Those credits are also a key to the future of Nine Mile Unit 1, which is already owned by Exelon. Last month officials announced that Unit 1 could shut down if clean energy credits were not passed in New York state. The company saying it needs $55 million in place to refuel the plant.

The credits are tied to the new Clean Energy Standard. Public Service Commission officials have released revised guidelines and are accepting public comments through Monday. Those guidelines would produce $480 million in credits during the next 12 years for benefiting nuclear power plants.

Activist groups like the Alliance for a Green Economy are calling the Clean Energy Standards a nuclear bailout. They are also calling for an extension on the public comment period, so that people can better analyze the revised guidelines.

Governor Cuomo is reacting to the news as well, saying in part:
 
"Fitzpatrick provides over 600 high-skilled, well-paying jobs, and accounts for hundreds of millions of dollars in annual economic activity. Further, the plant helps avoid millions of metric tons of harmful carbon dioxide emissions each year and serves as a clean energy bridge to meeting the state's 50 percent renewable energy goal by 2030."

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