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  • Wednesday, February 20, 2013


    Texas Wind Power Transmission Set To Skyrocket As Energy Exec Hints At End Of Nukes

    Tina Casey, February 10, 2013 (Clean Technica)

    “A $7 billion project that will send wind power from remote areas in West Texas to Dallas, Houston and other big cities is on the verge of completion, and that could pound yet another nail into the coffin for U.S. nuclear power and, for that matter, coal…When completed some time this year…3,500 miles of new line [will carry] up to 18,456 megawatts, and according to a trade news report, PUC is already looking to order more wind power transmission lines, apparently with connections to out of state markets…

    “…Christopher Crane, the CEO of energy giant Exelon…predicted that the influx of low cost wind power would lead the company to start shuttering its nuclear plants…Direct costs and risk management issues are already casting a shadow over the nuclear industry in Texas…In 2011, rival utility giant NRG was set to build two new power plants in Texas but backed off…The U.S. market isn’t the only place where nuclear energy is getting a chilly reception due to cost and safety concerns. The U.K.’s ambitious plan to build 10 new nuclear power plants just lost the backing of British utility Centrica, which is apparently going to concentrate its resources on renewable energy as well as natural gas.”

    “Coal is on even more shaky ground, partly because new wind farms and other clean energy facilities are beginning to offer more competitive alternatives, and also because existing coal power plants are being converted to other fuels, namely biomass and natural gas…As with nuclear power, the regulatory framework is also becoming more hostile to coal…Though the… domestic market for coal is drying up…U.S. coal companies have simply begun exporting more coal abroad…[and] pressure is mounting on Congress to allow more natural gas exports due to the domestic gas boom…

    “As for nuclear energy, the nation’s stock of aging nuclear facilities is creating one giant headache for local emergency planners to say nothing of ratepayers and taxpayers. It’s also creating a conundrum for diversified energy companies like Exelon, which operates the nation’s largest fleet of nuclear facilities but is also rapidly embracing wind and other renewables in its portfolio…Exelon’s first commercial wind farm only started operating in January 2012, and the company already has 44 wind projects operating in 10 different states…”


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