PPL Electric Utilities, which delivers most of the power to Lancaster County residents, has spoken out strongly against a legislative proposal to subsidize nuclear energy in Pennsylvania, including saving the Three Mile Island plant for a planned closure.
PPL, which said the proposal would cost its 1.4 million customers $130 million a year, called the legislation “bad public policy” and “an unfair burden on our customers.”
PPL could not immediately provide an estimate of how much a Lancaster County household’s bill would rise if subsidies are made.
In introducing a bill for subsidies for nuclear power produced in Pennsylvania earlier this week, state Rep. Thomas Mehaffie of Dauphin County put the added cost at $1.77 a month for the average household.
In a statement on its website, PPL said that no one disputes that nuclear energy is carbon-free and that the utility supports a clean energy future.
But the utility warned legislators and the public from confusing “narrow subsidy proposals with efficient and effective economy-wide, market-based efforts to move the state toward a low carbon future.”
The subsidies, PPL said, would make Pennsylvania less competitive and raise “the average price of electricity in the state for years to come.”
PPL owned the Susquehanna nuclear plant in Luzerne County until 2015 when it was taken over by a spinoff company, Talen Energy.
“Proponents of the nuclear subsidy measure have created a ‘crisis’ environment and want quick action from legislators. We're saying pump the brakes here and let this proposal be properly vetted. Hold hearings, call in all stakeholders and, most importantly, demand numbers from advocates of this plan,” PPL said.
“Is hiding a nuclear bailout in customers' electricity bills necessary and is it the best course to move Pennsylvania forward? We don't think so.”
State Sen. Ryan Aument of Landisville is expected to introduce similar legislation to aid nuclear power this week.