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[cdn-nucl-l] Reactor on schedule for 2007 restart
Posted in the KnoxNews on February 16, 2003 and at:
Reactor on schedule for 2007 restart
By Associated Press
February 16, 2003
ATHENS, Ala. - A director of the Tennessee Valley Authority said the restart
of a long-mothballed nuclear reactor is on schedule and within budget,
though it's still unclear how the agency will pay for the $1.8 billion
"They've made tremendous progress already," TVA Director Bill Baxter said
Friday after touring the reactor at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant. The reactor
was shut down in 1985 for safety reasons.
The agency has committed to spending $353 million this year on the five-year
project, and had about 1,700 people working on the reactor at the end of
TVA is trying to avoid adding to its $25 billion debt in financing Browns
Ferry, as well as millions of dollars in clean air improvements for its
coal-fired power plants.
The goal is to have the 1,280-megawatt Browns Ferry Unit 1 reactor back in
service by May 2007, generating enough power to meet the needs of about
650,000 homes. The project is about 12 percent complete, TVA officials said.
Charles River Associates Inc., a Boston-based investment firm, is working
with TVA to solicit financing and partnership proposals to help fund the
project. Baxter said the board expects a report from Charles River by the
end of March.
He said the board's approach is to obtain enough funding each year to keep
the project moving forward rather than trying to raise the entire amount at
TVA recently announced it plans to raise rates for the first time since
"All businesses face those balancing decisions," Baxter said. "We have to
make sure there is debt reduction, but we have also have to be investing in
our business. This (Unit 1 restart) will pay for itself in seven to eight
Baxter also said TVA is being "very vigilant" in protecting the power grid
and that the utility has instituted security measures given the nation's
heightened state of alert against potential terrorist attacks.
"It (security) was not immediately noticeable to the untrained eye, and this
is good," Baxter said.
Plant spokesman Craig Beasley said the perimeter around the plant has been
extended and the entrance reinforced. He said there are extra security
patrols and security is limiting access and doing vehicle searches.