Commentary

Commentaries are notes about nuclear economics, the electricity industry, or related issues. Join here for email updates. Feel free to send me comments via email.

The Japan Atomic Industrial Forum (JAIF) translates NECG Commentaries into Japanese. Many thanks to my friends and colleagues at JAIF!

#17 – Better Market Design

C17 - LDC

A Better Design for Electricity Markets This is a guest Commentary by Xavier Rollat on an idea for electricity market design to help nuclear operate with viable financial outcomes in electricity markets. Xavier is a friend and colleague and has joined with NECG on several client engagements.

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#16 – Peak Nuclear Power

NECG #16 - Decline Chart

Peak nuclear power U.S. nuclear power capacity reached a peak of about 102 GWe in 2012, but will decline as operating reactors retire but no new nuclear plants are built to replace them. U.S. operating nuclear power capacity is expected to decline under three scenarios: Red –

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#15 – Existential Threat

Quad Cities

Firms are declining to operate and declining to build nuclear power plants due to poor financial performance despite the large public benefits, including zero emission electricity, provided by nuclear power plants. As a new administration takes office, there is an opportunity to decide if and how the

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#14 – Market Failure & Nuclear Power

NECG Commentary #14 - Clinton Nuclear Power Plant

This month, Exelon decided to retire Clinton (photo above) and Quad Cities, OPPD decided to retire Fort Calhoun, and PG&E decided not to pursue license renewal for Diablo Canyon. The substantial public benefits from these six nuclear power reactors will be lost. This Commentary is about why

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June 2016 Update

NECG - Caron Pricing Not Enough to Help Nuclear Power (cover)

In the first half of 2016, NECG was involved in the CINTAC Nuclear Financing Workshop, the JAIF Annual Conference, and the IFNEC Nuclear Finance Conference. CINTAC – Global Nuclear Energy Financing Workshop, 11 March 2016, Washington DC Edward Kee was a panelist at the CINTAC Global Nuclear

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#13 – Davis-Besse

NECG Commentary #13 - Davis Besse

U.S. merchant nuclear power plants are losing money selling power into wholesale electricity markets. Two have retired early and more than a dozen are threatened. A recent state regulatory deal to save Davis Besse is promising, but faces challenges. The complicated cases and decisions discussed here are

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#12 – Nuclear Flexibility

NECG Commentary #12 - Ontario Nuclear Flexibility - Sept 2013

Ontario Nuclear Flexibility[1] Nuclear power plants usually operate in base load mode, but might enhance value by flexible operation. In September 2015, I participated in a brainstorming session at the U.S. Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI). The main topic of this session (and two earlier sessions) was how

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#11 – Nuclear Power in Summer

Washington DC

Summer in Washington DC Hot weather and a more relaxed approach, including this Commentary – 17 interesting things about nuclear power, with pictures.   See Buzz Feed Post   1.  Sendai restart! Earlier this week (on 11 August 2015), the Sendai 1 nuclear power reactor was restarted

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#10 – U.S. Government Role in Merchant Nuclear

US Capitol

Merchant nuclear projects, created by U.S. electricity industry reform, sell power into electricity markets. Two merchant nuclear projects closed early (and permanently) in 2013 due to financial losses and others may retire early because of losses. Should the U.S. government to take action to prevent the early

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#9 – Nuclear Surrender?

White flag

A WSJ editorial, Rethinking the U.S. Surrender on Nuclear Power[1], suggests that the U.S. and other Western democracies have surrendered the nuclear power industry to Russia and China because of our approach to nuclear safety regulation. The editorial ignores other important factors leading to the difference in

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