Dominion shuts down Kewaunee nuclear power plant in US

Energy firm Dominion has shut down its 556MW Kewaunee nuclear power plant in Wisconsin, US, permanently after 40 years of operation.

The company said the move was due to its inability to grow a Midwestern nuclear fleet to take advantages of economies of scale and find a buyer for the plant.

Dominion chief nuclear officer and president of Dominion Nuclear David Heacock said the decision was based purely on economics and the employees have operated the station safely and well.

“We will keep our focus on safety as we transition the station toward decommissioning,” Heacock added.

The Kewaunee plant was opened in 1974 and Dominion acquired the plant in July 2005 from its owners Wisconsin Public Service and Wisconsin Power and Light.

Dominion had put the power plant up for sale in 2011 even though its operating license was renewed by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission until 2033.

The move from Dominion follows Duke Energy’s recent decision, which asked the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to suspend its application to build two new nuclear units on its Harris site near New Hill in Wake County, North Carolina, US.