A Nuclear Energy Institute study says that the R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Plant provides western New York with more than just electricity.
The nuclear power station that is in jeopardy of closing due to economics that currently favor fossil fuel-burning plants, generates an average annual output of $350 million in the state, the NEI said. It also contributes $450 million to the U.S. economy, NEI said.
The study “confirms” the power plant's impact on job creation, tax payments, and “direct and secondary spending,” said Richard Myers, NEI’s vice president for policy development, planning and supplier programs.
Besides clean energy, the Exelon/Constellation NPP has a payroll of 700 persons and adds 800 to 1,000 additional workers during refueling and maintenance outages, which occur every 18 months. This activity helps create 800 other jobs, due to supply demands and payroll spending.
The annual payroll at the plant is about $100 million. For every dollar of output at Ginna, the U.S. economy produces $1.91, according to the study, which was released Monday.
The plant is also a major source of tax revenue for Wayne County and the state of New York. In 2014, the county, state and sales taxes paid by the company was more than $10 million.
Meanwhile, the plant has operated at a capacity factor of more than 95 percent over the past 10 years, making it significantly more reliable than other forms of electricity generation. To replace the plant with fossil-fuel burning plants would mean the addition of 2 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions released into the atmosphere each year.
“New York’s electric sector emits more than 30 million tons of carbon dioxide annually and nuclear energy provides nearly 60 percent of the state’s carbon-free electricity,” NEI said. “If Ginna were shut down … it would undo all the renewables investment made by New York in the past decade to comply with Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative requirements,” the study found.
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