Exelon Corp. announced Tuesday that all of its Illinois nuclear plants in PJM’s territory, including the Quad-Cities Generating Station, cleared in the power grid operator’s transition capacity auction.
The news means the plants, including the economically troubled Cordova plant, can sell supplemental power to the grid in the 2016-2017 planning year. It is positive news for the Quad-City facility, which a week ago, lost out on its bid to sell power to the grid in PJM’s 2018-2019 planning year.
The Quad-City facility is one of three Illinois nuclear plants that Exelon has threatened could face a premature closure because they are not competitive with other energy producers that are collecting billions in state and federal subsidies. The other Exelon plants are Byron and Clinton.
The other Illinois Exelon plants to clear the auction are Braidwood, Byron, Dresden and LaSalle.
“We continue to be encouraged by these auction results, which along with EPA’s Clean Power plan, begin to properly value nuclear power for the reliability and low-carbon benefits,” Exelon president and CEO Chris Crane said in a news release announcing the latest auction results.
Exelon has said Illinois cannot achieve the new EPA regulations for states to reduce emissions by 2022 without all of the current nuclear plants remaining in operation.
While calling the auction results “great news for Quad-Cities Station,” Stoermer added, “the crisis we continue facing involving the long-term future operation of the plant has many components. The future of 800 Quad-City region full-time jobs and millions (of dollars) in economic activity hang in the balance, while consumer prices and reliability across the state of Illinois will be negatively impacted if the plant were to close.”
According to Exelon, this is the first of two transitional auctions PJM is holding to supplement its previous base capacity auctions for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 planning years under PJM’s new capacity performance reforms.
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