Exelon Generation’s Oyster Creek Generating Station, one of the oldest nuclear power plants in the US, has been officially shut down permanently.
Located in Lacey, New Jersey, Oyster Creek commenced its commercial operations on 23 December 1969, and since then it has produced enough energy to power about 600,000 homes for almost half a century.
The plant generated nearly 200 million megawatt-hours of carbon-free electricity and is reported to have offset more than 140 million metric tonnes of carbon.
Oyster Creek site vice-president Tim Moore said: “Today we celebrate the proud legacy of Oyster Creek and the thousands of employees who worked here and shared our commitment to safety and operational excellence for almost 50 years.
“Eventually these buildings will disappear, but the station’s legacy of safe, reliable operations, community involvement, and environmental stewardship will never fade.”
In July this year, Exelon Generation conditionally sold Oyster Creek to the nuclear fuel management company Holtec International.
The transaction is expected to close next year after receiving licence transfer approval from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in the US.
Upon completion of the transaction, Holtec will be managing site decommissioning and restoration activities with a goal to achieve full decommissioning within eight years.
The decommissioning will see around 300 Oyster Creek employees being stationed at the nuclear power facility, who will work with Exelon Generation and eventually Holtec.