Opponents have not yet surrendered.
The New York Times reports:
For the first time in over three decades, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is expected to decide to grant a license to build a nuclear reactor — a milestone for an industry whose long-hoped-for renaissance is smaller and later than anticipated.
The vote, set for Thursday, is on two new reactors at the Southern Company’s Alvin W. Vogtle plant near Augusta, Ga. It would be the first vote on a construction license since 1978, a year before the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania…
Some industry experts and antinuclear groups argue that the Vogtle project poses major risks. “The potential is high for cost overruns, regulatory problems, outage issues, competing water needs in the state, drought situations, radioactive waste management issues and a range of ratepayer issues,” the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, an advocacy group, said in a filing with the Georgia Public Service Commission.
The new reactors would produce electricity at a cost of 7 to 9 cents per kilowatt-hour when Southern instead could be reducing demand by investing in efficiency at a cost of 3 cents per kilowatt-hour, the group said.
Nine organizations, including the Southern Alliance, said on Wednesday that they would sue to try to block the license because the commission had not adequately analyzed the new reactors’ design for hazards in response to last year’s disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan. The commission has ordered existing plants to adopt some safeguards in response to the Fukushima calamity and is considering others.