NYISO: Closing Indian Point nuclear plant could cause outages

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September 11, 2012 — Closing the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Buchanan, N.Y. could cause blackouts and other problems with the state's electricity supply, according to the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO).

The plant's two nuclear reactors produce about 2,000 MW of power. The reactors' 40-year licenses expire next year and in 2015.

Plant owner Entergy Nuclear has applied to the federal government for a 20-year extension. The state's electrical grid would be "degraded" if the relicensing is denied and the reactors shut down, according to NYISO.

N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, various environmental groups and others oppose relicensing, saying the plant is too dangerous to operate in a densely populated area.

Indian Point's role in supplying electricity and the impact its absence could have on the region and consumers has long been a matter of debate. Without Indian Point, an Entergy spokesman said, the area's power supply will suffer and consumers will pay more for electricity.

Opponents of Indian Point argue energy efficiency and new transmission projects can replace the nuclear power.

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