By Editors of Power Engineering
SCANA Corp. and Santee Cooper announced it has extended the term of its interim assessment agreement with Westinghouse Electric through June 26.
The agreement allows for a transition and evaluation period, during which South Carolina Electric & Gas Company, a subsidiary of SCANA, and Santee Cooper, can continue to make progress on a new nuclear reactor at the Virgil C. Sumner nuclear station.
The extension gives the owners more time to maintain all of their options and continue construction on the project while examining all relevant information for a thorough and accurate assessment to determine the most prudent path forward.
The announcement indicated the extension was subject to bankruptcy procedures.
Westinghouse filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in March after over $6 billion in losses. Though parent company Toshiba had promised it would ensure new nuclear development projects undertaken by Westinghouse would continue, including the Virgil C. Summer nuclear station in South Carolina and the Alvin W. Votgle nuclear plant in Georgia, it is not yet clear how the bankruptcy filing would ultimately affect construction of those projects, both of which are three years overdue.
Nuclear industry experts expressed concerns the bankruptcy might terminate the construction contracts and force SCANA and Georgia Power to find another builder.