New Aerial Photos of Our 3 New-Nuclear Construction Debacles Released: MOX, Vogtle, VC Summer
All Cranes Removed from Forlorn VC Summer Nuclear Scrapyard, Confirming ORS Report
Friends of the Earth/Sierra Club Win at SC PSC in Battle Over “Prudency” Hearing Schedule
Columbia, S.C. – New aerial photos of the three U.S. nuclear construction fiascos located in South Carolina or on the border have been released. The three mismanaged, problem-plagued projects are 1) VC Summer reactor project (terminated), 2) Georgia Power’s Vogtle reactor construction project (much delayed and far over budget) and 3) the plutonium fuel MOX project at DOE’s Savannah River Site (far over budget & schedule, on a termination track).
The VC Summer site continues slowly degrade due to the decision by South Carolina Electric & Gas (SCE&G) to walk away from the site on December 31, 2017. The project was abruptly halted on July 31, 2017 and workers sent immediately off the site, leaving behind what has become a shocking symbol of the wasteful $9 billion project.
In a review of the new VC Summer photos, taken on January 31, 2018 by High Flyer, no workers or work vehicles can be seen moving on the site though a few cars can be seen parked outside buildings adjacent to the construction site.
The photos confirm that all construction cranes – apart from the massive, immobile heavy lift derrick – have been removed from the site, as reported by the South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff (ORS) in an update posted on February 1.
“The photos are provided as a public service as SCE&G and Santee Cooper would rather that the startling photos of chaos at the site, which underscore the needless waste of $9 billion, not be seen by the public,” said Tom Clements, senior adviser with Friends of the Earth. “We think it important for people to see that the forlorn site remains much as it did when the project was abruptly halted on July 31 and that the project is indeed abandoned and that no effort is being made to revive it,” added Clements.
The new aerial photos of the three nuclear construction debacle, legally taken on January 31 by High Flyer, can be used with credit – see the “read me first” document posted with the photos on High Flyer’s Google drive:
At the VC Summer site, the reactor components and modules remain exposed to the weather as no type of cover has been constructed over the reactor shield buildings. The turbine building for unit 2 continues to have an unfinished roof and two costly steam generators still lay dumped on the ground in their white shrink wrap.
The photos are being released as the South Carolina Public Service Commission is setting the schedule for a consolidated hearing on the prudency of cost overrun decisions made by the PSC and on the abandonment/merger request by SCE&G and Dominion. On January 31, the PSC rejected a fast-track schedule and ruled that a hearing should begin near July 30, the date suggested by Friends of the Earth and the Sierra Club, in Docket 2017-207-E. (See Order 2018-80 linked here.) On February 2, a PSC hearing officer did not post the final hearing schedule but decided that the last day for parties to intervene in the matter is March 9. (See ruling linked here.)
Links to earlier photos of Vogtle and MOX available on request.