TVA, The nation’s largest public utility has voted to sell Bellefonte nuclear plant. The site includes two partially finished nuclear reactors, office buildings, warehouses, parking areas, railroad spurs and a helicopter pad that has cost them more than $4 billion dollars over the past four decades.
TVA President and CEO Bill Johnson said after the board vote last week that the 1,600 acre site has been appraised at $36 million. It will be sold at auction to the highest bidder, but the utility will consider job creation and economic impact when looking at potential buyers.
TVA began construction of the plant in 1974 but never completed the two reactors that were supposed to operate there. Construction of the plant was halted in 1988 due to decreased electrical demand. TVA considered resuming construction at Bellefonte and sought permits to build two additional reactors there, but withdrew the permits after deciding the plant was not needed. Current projections indicate that the plant wouldn’t be needed to be brought online for at least 20 years.
Phoenix Energy, a Nevada company has announced that it will try to purchase the plant. Managing partner Michael Dooley of Phoenix Energy says the company wants to use the Bellefonte Nuclear Plant site to produce electricity through a new technology.
The plant will be offered at auction to qualified bidders subject to a minimum price. To qualify, bidders must demonstrate their financial worthiness and submit their plans to develop the site, whether or not that includes completing the units