Law360, Philadelphia (June 5, 2017, 4:02 PM EDT) — Clean energy advocates are alarmed that Exelon‘s recently announced plans to shutter its Three Mile Island nuclear plant in 2019 will boost carbon emissions, and the move could provoke a fight in Pennsylvania’s General Assembly over legislation to save the industry.
Exelon Corp. blamed the decision to close the reactor — famed for a 1979 meltdown — 15 years before its license is set to expire on years of financial losses and on the state’s failure to offer better nuclear incentives.
But environmentalists say the proposed closure would have a disastrous effect on emissions in the state, and, consequently, the fight against climate change.
“Pennsylvania is already on a path to a 33 percent reduction in emissions … through the switch from coal to gas and the deployment of renewables,” said Davitt Woodwell, president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Environmental Council. “There’s real concern that if you take nuclear plants off line, the carbon emissions curve is not going to keep going down.”