October 28, 2019 / 6:43 PM / 15 days ago

NRC close to letting NextEra Florida Turkey Pt reactors operate for 80 yrs

Oct 28 (Reuters) - The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Monday moved a step closer to approving its first subsequent 20-year license to operate a nuclear power plant for up to 80 years for NextEra Energy Inc’s Turkey Point reactors in Florida.

Specifically, the NRC staff issued a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement in Florida Power & Light’s (FPL) application to operate its Turkey Point 3 and 4 units for an additional 20 years. FPL is a unit of NextEra.

Currently, FPL can operate the reactors for up to 60 years, until 2032 and 2033.

The first operating license the NRC issues is for 40 years. After that, utilities can apply to operate their reactors for 20 additional years. Eighty-eight of the 96 operating U.S. reactors have already received their first 20-year extensions.

FPL submitted the Turkey Point license renewal application on Jan. 30, 2018. The NRC said on its website that it could decide on the application as soon as this month.

Other companies seeking 20-year operating licenses that would allow their reactors to operate for up to 80 years include Exelon Corp’s Peach Bottom 2 and 3 in Pennsylvania and Dominion Energy Inc’s Surry 1 and 2 and North Anna 1 and 2 in Virginia.

Duke Energy Corp and Xcel Energy Inc and other utilities have said they are considering applying for subsequent 20-year licenses for their reactors. (Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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