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Wow! I didn't realize there are that many nuclear power plants in the US.
And they are all big, so 20% of our power is nuke. Probably a little less since some have been retired.
 

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The nuke plant near me is set to shut down in 2021. They cannot compete with the lower cost of Natural gas.
 

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You did say "may", but all power comes from the grid. There is no telling where your power actually "comes" from. And if we wanted to get super silly about it... Alternating current electricity doesn't "come" from anywhere... It just moves back and forth at 60hz. ;)

Useless trivia of the day... Distance traveled by electrons are measured in micro meters depending on current and conductor size...
 

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You did say "may", but all power comes from the grid. There is no telling where your power actually "comes" from. And if we wanted to get super silly about it... Alternating current electricity doesn't "come" from anywhere... It just moves back and forth at 60hz. ;)

Useless trivia of the day... Distance traveled by electrons are measured in micro meters depending on current and conductor size...
Long distance transmission is high voltage DC, so those electrons might travel a thousand miles
 

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The nuke plant near me is set to shut down in 2021. They cannot compete with the lower cost of Natural gas.
That's probably not the whole reason. Nuke power is the cheapest thermal power by a couple cents. Just from economy of scale. NG is still more than coal, depending market. So it's not from NG being relatively cheap.
 

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Long distance transmission is high voltage DC, so those electrons might travel a thousand miles
Yes, for some transmission. But distribution is AC.
 

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The nuke plant near me is set to shut down in 2021. They cannot compete with the lower cost of Natural gas.
dealing with nuclear waste and keeping everything up to snuff and certified is expensive. My guess is they are due for a big dollar refit and figure its cheaper just to shut down. If the maintenance bill wasn't coming due, they wouldn't be shutting down.
 

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I am in a 25 mile radius of 7 power houses.
One coal fired, two gas fire, two nukes and two co generation plants.
 

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dealing with nuclear waste and keeping everything up to snuff and certified is expensive. My guess is they are due for a big dollar refit and figure its cheaper just to shut down. If the maintenance bill wasn't coming due, they wouldn't be shutting down.
It's not, and it's not nearly that simply. Plants are completely rebuilt and replaced several times over through its life. Nuke plants are expensive, but their fuel costs are practically nothing compared to gas and coal. In the end, cost/kw is an industry tracked standard and nuke power is a cheaper than coal and gas. Aging plants cost more but all nuke plants are aging. Cost/kw is cost/kw. That includes maintenance.
 

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I'm sure there is more to it than the press release. Yes gas has pressured everything. But the nuke plants are 14% of their portfolio and they are bankrupt. It's not because of the nuke plants. Yes, they can be the best choices to close... But all told, their problems seem bigger than gas prices.
 

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I'm sure there is more to it than the press release. Yes gas has pressured everything. But the nuke plants are 14% of their portfolio and they are bankrupt. It's not because of the nuke plants. Yes, they can be the best choices to close... But all told, their problems seem bigger than gas prices.
I've heard it's close to needing an overhaul & the overhaul cost recovery just isn't there.
 

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It's not, and it's not nearly that simply. Plants are completely rebuilt and replaced several times over through its life. Nuke plants are expensive, but their fuel costs are practically nothing compared to gas and coal. In the end, cost/kw is an industry tracked standard and nuke power is a cheaper than coal and gas. Aging plants cost more but all nuke plants are aging. Cost/kw is cost/kw. That includes maintenance.
but I suspect that maintenance is not evenly distributed.
I've heard it's close to needing an overhaul & the overhaul cost recovery just isn't there.
Even if it would pay for itself eventually, you still have to deal with the cash flow implications until it's paid off. That $60k car may actually cost less in the long run than does the $40k car, but you still have to be able to pay the note in the short run. If you can't do that, the total cost of ownership over 10 years is irrelevant.
 

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So the Davis plant own two of the top five nuke incidents since 79. A giant hole was corroded into the reactor head in 2002. Shut down for 2 years and cost $600 million to repair. Fined $33 million. Criminal charges filed for falsifying inspections and lying to investigators and fined another $28 million. The new head failed and they had to replace that in 2010.... So ya, that tends to make plants unprofitable... They can still be sold to another utility. There's more to it than gas prices....
 

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but I suspect that maintenance is not evenly distributed.

Even if it would pay for itself eventually, you still have to deal with the cash flow implications until it's paid off. That $60k car may actually cost less in the long run than does the $40k car, but you still have to be able to pay the note in the short run. If you can't do that, the total cost of ownership over 10 years is irrelevant.
This isn't a car and the economics are not even close. Power plants generate money period. O&M is passed onto rate payers. Nuke plants are base loaded bulk generators. They run full load 24/7/365. They have purchase and sale contracts. Capital projects are paid with bonds and bond ratings determine debt service. These plants have already paid for themselves. They are not shutting down over maintance costs or gas or an oil change. Mismanagement, bankruptcy, seeking protections, down graded bond ratings... Those are financial pressures. There's more to it than the press release.
 

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Paying the bond is just like paying a bank note.

Nuke plants shut down all the time. It only makes sense that more shut down when energy prices are low, and virtually all of the shut down before a big bill comes due.
 

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The problem for many utilities is that the fact they are required to buy wind and solar they don’t want or need.
No, that is not the problem for many.... If you are talking about renewable mandates, most all are voter approved. The cost of those mandates are passed on to the rate payers whos rates are voted on by Utility commissions. In 2017, 1% of our power came from solar, and 6% from wind. That is not putting a hurting on anyone. Xcel Energy can't build wind fast enough. They are shutting down 600MW of coal in our state, and adding 400MW of wind. That has nothing to do with mandates for a multi state utility. In fact, they had to prove to the Utility commission here that it was not going to impact rates. And the state didn't mandate it. Voters approved a measure for 20% renewables by 2035 10 years ago.

Fact is, the push for renewables by rate payers and utilities is moving faster than legislation. There is nothing unreasonable or unrealistic with 20-30% of our power coming from renewables. The majority of that will be hydro and wind. It would actually improve resiliency with cyber attacks or some large event black out. It's not that I am "for" renewables, its just that there is no reason not to have some.
 
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