News Center > Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station Shut Down Permanently
Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station Shut Down Permanently
PLYMOUTH, Mass. – Control room operators at Entergy’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, located in Plymouth, Massachusetts, shut down its reactor for the final time on Friday, May 31, at 5:28 p.m. The decision to shut down Pilgrim was the result of a number of financial factors, including low wholesale energy prices.
“The difficult but necessary decision to close Pilgrim impacted our dedicated employees and their families, and was a decision we did not make lightly,” said Entergy Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Leo Denault. “Our employees are the backbone of the company, and their pride and professionalism are evident every day. Their legacy is a 47-year record of carbon-free power generation, done safely and securely, which benefitted the region in innumerable ways.”
The closure of Pilgrim is another important milestone in Entergy’s exit of the merchant power business, as the company transitions to a pure-play utility business.
As part of its employee commitment at Pilgrim, the company previously announced its plan to find a position within Entergy for those qualified employees who were willing to relocate. Currently, more than 50 employees from Pilgrim have accepted offers to continue with the company in other locations.
In August, Entergy announced the proposed sale of the subsidiary that owns Pilgrim to a Holtec International subsidiary, a decommissioning specialty company that plans to complete decommissioning at the site decades sooner than if Entergy continued to own the plant. Regulatory approval and closing of the transaction are targeted for 2019. Holtec, through its affiliate Comprehensive Decommissioning International, will hire Entergy’s employees at Pilgrim who have been selected for “Phase I” of decommissioning.
Entergy’s remaining operating nuclear power plants in merchant power markets - Indian Point Unit 2 and Unit 3, in New York, and Palisades Power Plant, in Michigan, are scheduled to be shut down in 2020, 2021, and 2022, respectively. These closures, along with the sale of these plants to decommissioning specialty companies, mark the end of Entergy’s participation in merchant power markets and its return to a pure-play utility.
Entergy owns and operates five nuclear power units in its regulated utility business, and is committed to the continued operation of its nuclear fleet in those locations. Its nuclear power plants in those markets are located in Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi, and have more than 5,000 megawatts of clean, reliable, and economic electricity generating capacity for customers in those regions.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
In this news release, and from time to time, Entergy Corporation makes certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements include, among other things, Entergy’s plans and expectations with respect to the sale of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, other steps being taken by Entergy to exit the merchant power business, and other statements of Entergy’s plans, beliefs or expectations included in this news release. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which apply only as of the date of this news release. Except to the extent required by the federal securities laws, Entergy undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements, including (a) those factors discussed elsewhere in this news release and in Entergy’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, any subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Entergy’s other reports and filings made under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934; (b) uncertainties associated with (1) rate proceedings, formula rate plans and other cost recovery mechanisms, including the risk that costs may not be recoverable to the extent anticipated by the utilities and (2) implementation of the ratemaking effects of changes in law; (c) uncertainties associated with efforts to remediate the effects of major storms and recover related restoration costs; (d) risks associated with operating nuclear facilities, including plant relicensing, operating and regulatory costs and risks; (e) changes in decommissioning trust fund values or earnings or in the timing or cost of decommissioning Entergy’s nuclear plant sites; (f) legislative and regulatory actions and risks and uncertainties associated with claims or litigation by or against Entergy and its subsidiaries; (g) risks and uncertainties associated with strategic transactions that Entergy or its subsidiaries may undertake, including the risk that any such transaction may not be completed as and when expected and the risk that the anticipated benefits of the transaction may not be realized; (h) effects of changes in federal, state or local laws and regulations and other governmental actions or policies, including changes in monetary, fiscal, tax, environmental or energy policies; and (i) the effects of technological changes and changes in commodity markets, capital markets or economic conditions; and (j) impacts from a terrorist attack, cybersecurity threats, data security breaches or other attempts to disrupt Entergy’s business or operations, and other catastrophic events.
About Pilgrim and Entergy
The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station employs about 600 nuclear professionals and had 680 megawatts of virtually carbon-free electricity generating capacity, enough to power more than 600,000 homes. Pilgrim began generating electricity in 1972. Entergy purchased the plant in 1999 from Boston Edison. Additional information is available at www.pilgrimpower.com.
Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including 9,000 megawatts of nuclear power. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.9 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of $11 billion and nearly 13,700 employees. Additional information is available at entergy.com.