CHICAGO —Gov. Andrew Cuomo's draft clean energy plan for New York would save thousands of high-paying jobs and spur hundreds of millions of dollars in short-term investments in energy infrastructure in upstate New York, Exelon Corp. said today in response to a Department of Public Service staff paper released Friday.
The proposals in the paper, if approved, would keep Exelon's upstate nuclear plants running as the state transitions to a 50 percent zero-carbon energy standard by 2030.
"Without Gov. Cuomo's leadership and the development of the Clean Energy Standard, our units at Nine Mile Point and Ginna in Upstate New York are in jeopardy of closure," said Joseph Dominguez, executive vice president for Governmental and Regulatory Affairs and Public Policy, Exelon. "These units employ 1,400 full-time workers with an annual payroll of $266 million, pay over $47 million annually in local taxes and support thousands of indirect jobs across New York through part-time employment and the purchase of goods and services. We make the zero-carbon electricity that is always available to meet our customers' needs on the hottest or coldest days of the year.
"If the program is approved, we will immediately reinvest approximately $200 million in the plants in the spring and continue to operate. If the program is not approved, we need to go in a different direction," Dominguez said.
The two plants produce 2.4 billion watts of zero-carbon electricity continuously, most of which would have to be replaced by carbon-producing generators if the plants cease to operate. The loss of the plants would effectively eliminate the so-called "bridge" to a low-carbon energy future for New York and make achieving the state's environmental goals difficult or impossible, Dominguez said.
Exelon also confirmed that it has entered into discussions with Entergy Corporation to buy the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Plant in Oswego, New York.
"With Governor Cuomo's leadership, we have an opportunity to rescue and continue to operate a critical power plant that supports thousands of skilled men and women," said Chris Crane, Exelon president and CEO. "The proposed CES program, if approved, will give us the confidence to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in Fitzpatrick in January to refuel the plant and upgrade systems needed to reverse the shutdown decision."
A New York Public Service Commission's analysis released April 18 said that Fitzpatrick produces more than $1 billion in economic value annually to New York. An independent study published by The Brattle Group in December found similar economic benefits.
"We know how important saving Fitzpatrick is to New York families and businesses," Crane said. "And we look forward to working with Entergy, the state, the local communities and business leaders, and our partners in labor to save the plant."
Cautionary Statements Regarding Forward-Looking Information
This release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, that are subject to risks and uncertainties. The factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements made by Exelon Corporation and Exelon Generation Company, LLC (Registrants) include those factors discussed herein, as well as the items discussed in (1) Exelon's 2015 Annual Report on Form 10-K in (a) ITEM 1A. Risk Factors, (b) ITEM 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and (c) ITEM 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data: Note 23; (2) PHI's 2015 Annual Report on Form 10-K in (a) ITEM 1A. Risk Factors, (b) ITEM 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and (c) ITEM 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data: Note 16; (3) Exelon's First Quarter 2016 Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q in (a) Part II, Other Information, ITEM 1A. Risk Factors; (b) Part 1, Financial Information, ITEM 2. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and (c) Part I, Financial Information, ITEM 1. Financial Statements: Note 18 and (4) other factors discussed in filings with the SEC by the Registrants. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which apply only as of the date of this release. Neither of the Registrants undertakes any obligation to publicly release any revision to its forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.