Monday, February 16, 2009

Florida's Nuclear Nuts

This is getting too good to be true.  As my two regular readers will recall, I have at times mused that new nuclear plants are just too expensive, setting aside for the moment their toxic legacy for future generations to deal with.  

Now Progress Energy has upset their ratepayers.  As the St. Petersburg Times reports today, ratepayers were slapped with a 24 percent increase in their rates in January, about half of which was to pay in advance for the construction costs of a nuclear power plant.  The plant is not due online until 2017, and is to cost $17 billion.  The increased rates are to collect $5 billion in advance of construction, thereby reducing the amount of borrowing for construction.  

One can only wonder what the utility will do with the money it collects, put it in a shoe-box?  Perhaps invest in a CD yielding 1 percent interest?  Spend it on executive perks?   Buy stocks that could become worthless?  

Note to the 3.1 million Florida residents in the Progress Energy service area:  Home Solar Panels.  You are in Florida, where the sun shines!   Generate your own power, and sell some back to the utility.  

Roger E. Sowell, Esq. aka energyguy on

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