The governor of Ohio, John Kasich, said Monday that he would not support a rescue plan for FirstEnergy Corp that would ensure the state's two nuclear power plants would have viable financial futures.
Like many other regions, the energy market in Ohio has been turned upside down by the advent of cheap natural gas that has undercut wholesale prices just at the time when global warming has emerged as the world's No. 1 environmental threat. Despite the greenhouse gas emissions of natural gas-fired power plants, many lawmakers see nuclear power as too unpopular to support during a time in which renewable power sources have become the go-to response to the risks of climate change, even if, in reality, more natural gas plants are being constructed.
According to the Associated Press, Gov. Kasich made his comments on the state's energy future after touring a new natural gas plant near Toledo that cost $800 million to build and will power up to 700,000 homes. He advocated a mix of generation power sources, including nuclear, but said he did not support the prposed financial package to help nuclear power in Ohio.
“There is always a tendency to slip back into yesterday. This represents tomorrow,” Kasich said of the natural-gas burning facility.
In the state's legislature, a bill that would provide $300 million a year of aid to FirstEnergy has been in a stall since late spring, AP reported.
FirstEnergy operates the Davis-Besse and Perry nuclear plants in Ohio. They are among a slew of nuclear power plants facing financial difficulties in Midwest and the Northeast.
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