SART panel

State Sen. Chuck Hufstelter questions financial plan for Plant Vogtle

At Friday morning’s Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable (SART), State Sen. Chuck Hufstetler (R-Rome) strongly criticized the financial plan to pay for the two new nuclear power plants at Plant Vogtle.

Hufstetler, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, openily criticized Senate Bill 31 that passed in 2009 that approved the financial plan for Plant Vogtle. It was called the Georgia Nuclear Energy Financing Act, which permitted the utility to begin recovering the costs of financing the construction of the new nuclear plants from consumers before they came on line. 

Georgia Power vs. the law of holes

By Lyle V. Harris
Georgia Power is likely to get another shot-in-the-arm after announcing plans to complete construction on those ill-fated nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle near Waynesboro. A far more appropriate response to this epic boondoggle, of course, would be a swift kick in the pants. But don’t count on it. 

Plant Vogtle

Southern Co. decides to move forward on Plant Vogtle project

Atlanta-based Southern Co. has decided to push forward with completion of an over-budget, behind-schedule nuclear expansion at Plant Vogtle rather than give up on what has ballooned into a $25.2 billion project.

Southern affiliate Georgia Power Co. filed a recommendation Thursday with the state Public Service Commission (PSC) to continue construction at the nuclear plant south of Augusta, Ga. The project’s co-owners, Oglethorpe Power, MEAG Power and Dalton Utilities all supported the recommendation, Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power told Atlanta Business Chronicle in an exclusive interview minutes after the announcement.

Atlanta to produce solar energy at five solar farms, including two at airport, sell to Georgia Power

Atlanta intends to generate solar power and sell it to Georgia Power through a planned public-private partnership with a Chicago-based energy firm.

The Atlanta City Council on Monday authorized Mayor Kasim Reed to enter negotiations with New Generation Power, Inc. Terms call for a 20-year ground lease with the solar company, and for the firm to deliver, install and maintain photovoltaic panels and related equipment.

The city intends to lease land for solar farms at three landfills, which are closed, and at two sites at Atlanta’s airport, according to provisions of the legislation. The company is to pay all costs associated with the project, and its website says it has funds available through its shareholders, partners, and lending institutions.

Former EPA administrator discusses Georgia Power rate case, role of nuclear power in nation’s energy mix

Georgia’s utility regulator made the right decision in allowing Georgia Power to raise rates to pay for power plant upgrades before the work is complete, according to former EPA administrator Christine Todd Whitman.

“What that does is prevent a cliff from developing, where you have to recover costs all at once,” Whitman said. “We have aging infrastructure. That’s a challenge everyone is facing across the country.”

Whitman spoke with discuss her concerns about a guest column on solar power. The conversation covered a variety of policy issues related to the nation’s power supply and delivery system.

Millennials favor coal-fired power plants, Georgia Power rate hike, says poll released by Sierra Club

Young Georgia voters strongly favor the proposed Georgia Power rate hike and fewer than half support shifting from coal to renewables to generate electricity, according to a results of a poll by the Georgia chapter of the Sierra Club.

The polling company advised against reading too much into results from the millennials because the margin of error for the age bracket is 13.2 percent, compared to 3.23 percent for the total poll. The broader results of the poll show widespread opposition to the proposed rate hike and strong support for shifting away from coal-fired power plants.

Georgia Power is requesting to hike its rates in order to raise $873 million. Georgia’s Public Service Commission is slated to vote on the proposal Dec. 17, following a decision Thursday morning by a PSC committee to schedule the matter for a vote by the full commission.