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U.S. Chamber Applauds NRC Approval of New Nuclear Reactors

Wednesday, February 8, 2012 - 7:00pm

Decision ‘Represents An Enormous Milestone in the Effort to Provide Safe, Reliable, and Clean Electricity to Consumers,’ Says Harbert

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Karen Harbert, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber’s Institute for 21st Century Energy, issued the following statement regarding the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) decision to approve the Combined Construction and Operating License (COL) for units 3 and 4 at Plant Vogtle in Waynesboro, GA:

“The approval of two new nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle represents an enormous milestone in the effort to provide safe, reliable, and clean electricity to consumers. This important step allows full construction to begin on the first new reactors built in over 30 years and is the result of hard work by Southern Company and its partners, and the NRC. This first-ever approval of a reactor under this new licensing regime demonstrates the process works and goes a long way in reducing the risk for other new nuclear reactors to follow.

“We firmly believe that energy is the foundation that fuels America’s economic recovery. The $14 billion investment in the new reactors at Plant Vogtle will create 5,000 new construction jobs and 800 permanent jobs—many of them highly skilled. In addition, these new reactors will help us meet increased demand for electricity by powering nearly half a million homes and businesses in Georgia with emissions free power.

“In a time of excessive red tape and over-regulation, it is refreshing to see a project like this move forward. Unfortunately, opponents of nuclear power are still seeking to halt these and other new reactors from being built despite indisputable evidence supporting them. It is disappointing that the Chairman of the NRC saw fit to join them. Nevertheless, today’s decision is worth celebrating.”