Report: Cost of Crystal River 3 Concrete Repair Likely to Exceed Progress Energy Estimates

An outside analysis of concrete delamination at Florida's Crystal River nuclear plant concludes repair costs would likely go beyond Progress Energy's initial estimates.

Crystal River power plant. Source: Duke EnergyA Zapata Inc. review filed with the Florida Public Service Commission Monday reported that the current repair plan appears technically feasible, according to a Duke Energy release, but challenges remain. While Progress' earlier estimates for repair costs topped out at $1.3 billion, the new study estimated they would run closer to $1.5 billion. Factoring in potential unplanned contingencies, Zapata also provided cost estimates for more extensive repairs.  They included a worst-case scenario requiring replacement of the dome and the lower elevations. Should that happen, repairs would cost an estimated $3.4 billion and take eight years.

The reactor north of Tampa has been offline since 2009 when the wall of its containment building was found to be cleaving apart following a steam generator replacement. The plant's owner has not decided whether to repair or retire the plant, and uncertainty over the costs ahead was said to have played a role in the ouster of Progress Energy CEO Bill Johnson after his company merged with Duke Energy.

As it continues to analyze its options, a Duke statement read, "We will proceed with a repair option only if there is a high degree of confidence that the repair can be successfully completed and licensed within the final estimated costs and schedule, and is in the best interests of our customers, joint owners and investors."

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  • Anonymous

    could be used as an experimental civil test-bed with funding provided via DOE.  SUbsequently could be re-started and run for 30+ years.