Atlanta, February 9, 2012 — Construction is set to begin on the nation's first two new nuclear units in 30 years at Southern Co. unit Georgia Power's Plant Vogtle, near Waynesboro, Ga.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission voted to approve the issuance of the Combined Construction and Operating License for Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4, the first such license ever approved for a U.S. nuclear plant. Receipt of the license signifies that full construction can begin.
The company expects to deliver to customers more than $1 billion in benefits from the Department of Energy loan guarantees, production tax credits and recovering financing costs during construction. Georgia Power expects Unit 3 to begin operating in 2016 and Unit 4 in 2017.
The approval of the Vogtle license was a joint effort with NuStart Energy Development, a partnership of 10 power companies created in 2004 to obtain a COL using the new streamlined licensing process and complete the design engineering for the selected reactor technologies.
In 2009, NuStart named Vogtle the reference plant for the Westinghouse AP1000 technology.
Southern Nuclear, a unit of Southern Co., is overseeing construction and will operate the two new 1,100-MW AP1000 units for Georgia Power and co-owners Oglethorpe Power Corporation, the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and Dalton Utilities.
Georgia Power owns 45.7 percent of the new units, with a certified cost of $6.1 billion.