America’s Deteriorating Nuclear Infrastructure, Three Mile Island Plant to Close In 2019

Exelon Corp.’s Three Mile Island atomic power plant, site of the worst U.S. commercial nuclear accident in 1979, will close in 2019 after losing money for five years.

The Pennsylvania plant, with one reactor still in operation, has lost revenue as power prices fell, Chicago-based Exelon said Tuesday in a filing. For the third consecutive year, the plant failed to win generating capacity payments last week in an auction held by PJM Interconnection LLC, the largest U.S. power market. Meanwhile, the generator has failed to win government subsidies or market reforms to enhance its viability, Exelon said.

The announcement underscores challenges facing U.S. nuclear power generators from plants burning cheap natural gas and rising output of wind and solar power. At least five nuclear power plants have retired in the past five years including Fort Calhoun in Nebraska, which closed in October. Entergy Corp. in December announced plans to close its Palisades plant in Michigan.

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