No federal aid to restart Michigan nuclear power plant

Holtec will now begin decommissioning the site, which is expected to take until 2041 to complete.
Holtec will now begin decommissioning the site, which is expected to take until 2041 to complete.(WOOD-TV)
Published: Nov. 20, 2022 at 8:12 PM EST
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COVERT, Mich. (AP) — The federal government has turned down a request for financial aid to restart a nuclear power plant in southwestern Michigan, the owner said.

Holtec International said it was notified Friday by the U.S. Energy Department.

The Palisades plant along Lake Michigan, formerly owned by Entergy, was shut down last spring after generating electricity for more than 50 years.

With Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s support, Holtec, a company that specializes in decommissioning nuclear plants, applied for federal aid to keep it going. She said it would help economic development in the state.

But the Biden administration said no, The Herald-Palladium reported.

“We fully understood that what we were attempting to do, restarting a shuttered nuclear plant, would be both a challenge and a first for the nuclear industry,” said Pat O’Brien, Holtec’s director of government affairs.

Palisades critics were pleased with the government’s decision. A coalition of environmental groups wrote a letter in September, saying the site didn’t qualify for the program.

“For the sake of Michiganders’ health, safety, security, environment and pocketbooks, we are very thankful this zombie reactor nightmare has finally ended,” the group Beyond Nuclear said.

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