Holtec Adds Indian Point Nuclear Plant to Decommissioning Portfolio

Entergy on April 16 said it will sell its Indian Point Energy Center to Comprehensive Decommissioning International, a Camden, N.J.-based jointly owned subsidiary of Holtec International, a company buying nuclear plants that are closed or scheduled for retirement.

Holtec in the deal will receive funds that Entergy has invested in a decommissioning trust, currently worth about $2 billion. Entergy has now agreed to sell all its remaining fleet of merchant nuclear reactors to decommissioning firms; the company last year said it would sell its Vermont Yankee plant, which closed in 2014, to New York-based NorthStar.

NorthStar said it would complete decommissioning and restoration of the Vermont Yankee site by 2030. Entergy in its decommissioning report filed with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) had said its work would not be completed until 2075.

Entergy has said it will shut down the last two of Indian Point’s three reactors in 2021. Unit 1, a 257-MW reactor that came online in 1962, was retired in 1974. Units 2 and 3, which came online in 1974 and 1976, respectively, together generate 2,060 MW of electricity.

“The sale of Indian Point to Holtec is expected to result in the completion of decommissioning decades sooner than if the site were to remain under Entergy’s ownership,” said Entergy Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Leo Denault in a statement. “With its deep experience and technological innovations, Holtec’s ability to decommission Indian Point will benefit stakeholders in the surrounding community.”

Entergy in 2017 said it would close Indian Point, located on a 240-acre site in Buchanan, New York, as part of a deal reached with the state of New York and the environmental group Riverkeeper. Local officials have said they want to redevelop the property. Entergy officials earlier had said they were not interested in redevelopment, but Holtec officials said they may revisit that decision.

Kris Singh, president of Holtec International, in a statement said, “Our industry-leading expertise and deep experience permit us to complete decommissioning at Indian Point decades sooner than if Entergy remained the owner and performed decommissioning itself. The potential for the site to be released decades sooner for redevelopment could deliver significant benefits to local community stakeholders and the local economy.”

Holtec will now own six nuclear reactors in four states: New Jersey, Michigan, New York, and Massachusetts. The NRC must still approve this latest deal.

Darrell Proctor is a POWER associate editor (@DarrellProctor1, @POWERmagazine).