Energy / FirstEnergy

FirstEnergy to seek “zero emission credits” for its 2 Ohio nukes

FirstEnergy is about to ask Ohio lawmakers to create new regulations awarding “zero emission credits,” or ZECs, to its nuclear power plants, Davis-Besse east of Toledo and Perry east of Cleveland, in recognition that they do not contribute to air pollution. The ZECs would increase customer bills. The plan is sure to be challenged in federal court because it would subsidize the nukes which are supposed to be operating in a competitive market.

COLUMBUS — “FirstEnergy needs more money to keep its two Ohio nuclear power plants operating and, according to a Cincinnati Republican lawmaker who broke the news to the public this morning, is proposing new charges called ‘zero emission credits.’

…Lobbyists said each Zero Emission Credit, or ZEC, in Ohio would be worth about $17, giving a dollar value to the fact that nuclear reactors generate electricity without producing CO2 and other combustion pollutants.

They said the ZEC program would be designed to allow FirstEnergy to collect an additional $300 million annually, in perpetuity. That total figure was based on the output over the last two years of the Davis-Besse nuclear power plant, east of Toledo, and the Perry nuclear power plant, east of Cleveland.

Consumers would see monthly power bills rise by about 5 percent, in this scenario, while commercial and industrial customers could see increases between 5 percent and 9 percent.”

— John Funk, Cleveland Plain Dealer

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