Following a recent technical conference in Washington, D.C., the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) suggested a set of actions for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to pursue to avoid further U.S. nuclear plant closures.
NEI reiterated the advantages of nuclear energy, including grid reliability, diversified energy portfolio and zero carbon pollutants, in a posting on its website.
The NEI posting suggested that FERC regard the maintenance of nuclear plants as a “fundamental guiding principle” with attention to wholesale market activity; avoid compromising state public policy goals; instruct independent system operators (ISOs) or regional transmission organizations (RTOs) to develop additional revenue sources; an step up action “with greater urgency” to advance energy market price reforms.
The NEI said wholesale markets and RTOs/ISOs generate no specific material rewards for environmental benefits, stability and resiliency. Consequently, the system favors short-term pricing and tends toward less costly natural gas, leading to premature shutdown of nuclear sites.