Nuclear Matters Statement on Exelon Announcement of Early Retirement of Clinton and Quad-Cities Nuclear Plants

WASHINGTON, DC (June 2, 2016) – Nuclear Matters co-chair, former Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN), issued the following statement on Exelon’s announcement today that the company plans to move forward with the premature shutdown of the Clinton and Quad Cities nuclear plants, given the lack of progress on Illinois energy legislation.

“Today’s announcement is yet another unfortunate reminder of the challenges that well-functioning existing nuclear energy plants face, and the urgency that is needed for policymakers to implement solutions that keep these plants open.  Our clean energy future depends on it, in Illinois and across the country where nuclear makes up the majority of our carbon-free energy mix.

The closure of Clinton and Quad-Cities will be felt acutely by the state and significantly hinder Illinois’ standing as an environmental leader: Illinois counts on nuclear plants to provide 92 percent of its carbon-free electricity.  The absence of Clinton and Quad-Cities will make it near impossible for the state to reach its carbon reduction goals, including those put forth by the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan.  Moreover, the shutting of Clinton and Quad-Cities nuclear plants will have a devastating impact on the thousands of families, businesses and organizations that depend on these facilities to fuel their economic livelihood.

We are hopeful that the push to properly value these plants via passage of the Next Generation Energy Plan (NGEP) continues as the Illinois legislature meets throughout the month of June.  Passage of the NGEP would send a signal to the rest of the state, and the country, that policymakers are taking action to ensure that our energy policies have caught up with our country’s environmental goals and priorities.”