US Department of Energy gives $1.8bn loan guarantee for nuclear power project in Georgia

24 June 2015 (Last Updated June 24th, 2015 18:30)

The US Department of Energy has agreed to offer a $1.8bn loan guarantee to three subsidiaries of the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG Power) in order to support construction of two nuclear units at the Alvin W Vogtle Electric Generating Plant in the state.

vogtle npp

The US Department of Energy has agreed to offer a $1.8bn loan guarantee to three subsidiaries of the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG Power) in order to support construction of two nuclear units at the Alvin W Vogtle Electric Generating Plant in the state.

This marks the third loan guarantee from the government out of the three commitments made in 2010.

Previously, two similar financial guarantees were given by the department, totalling $6.5bn to Gia Power Company (GPC) and Oglethorpe Power Corporation (OPC).

The loan guarantees complete the entire financing for the nuclear project, which presently houses two more nuclear units.

"The loan guarantees complete the entire financing for the nuclear project."

The two Westinghouse AP1000 reactors to be installed at the facility will each have a power generation capacity of 1,100MW.

Once commissioned, the nuclear units will be able to meet the power demands of nearly 1.5 million homes in the US.

The nuclear project is also likely to reduce approximately 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions every year.

US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said: "As we move towards a low-carbon future, the department’s loan guarantee will play an important part in expanding the role of nuclear energy as a part of our all-of-the-above energy strategy.

"The Vogtle project has put the US at the forefront of a new generation of advanced nuclear reactors, incorporating numerous innovations, resulting in significant operational and safety improvements, and helping to train a world-class workforce with expertise in building nuclear power plants."


Image: Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant. Photo: courtesy of NRC / Wikipedia.