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Federal loan guarantees boost nuclear energy projects

Scott Tong Mar 27, 2019
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Aerial view of the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant.
Charles C Watson Jr./Wikimedia

The nuclear energy industry — struggling to compete against low-cost natural gas and renewable energy —  is hoping a new $3.7 billion loan guarantee from the Trump Administration will provide a shot in the arm. Last Friday, Energy Secretary Rick Perry visited the Vogtle nuclear project in Georgia, where he pledged additional guarantees to increase the total federal loan amount to $12 billion, and said the administration would help revitalize and expand the U.S. nuclear industry.

But the industry still faces challenges: the Vogtle project, three years overdue and vastly over budget, is the country’s first nuclear energy construction project in more than 30 years. Already, analysts at Morgan Stanley say there is a “very good chance” project costs will jump another $2.1 billion.

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