*Corrected, Updated August 16
The co-owner of an overbudget energy project has withdrawn its request to abandon the construction of two nuclear reactors in Jenkinsville, S.C.
South Carolina Electric and Gas on Tuesday announced it would withdraw its Abandonment Petition—filed August 1—from the state Public Service Commission. The energy company, a subsidiary of SCANA, cited concerns voiced by stakeholders and the General Assembly since July as the reason for withdrawal.
“We have been meeting with governmental officials and various stakeholders since our announcement to abandon the new nuclear project,” SCANA Chairman and CEO, Kevin Marsh said in a statement Tuesday.
“The purpose of these ongoing meetings is to discuss their concerns and to explain the path that led us to the abandonment decision. While ceasing construction was always our least desired option, based on the impact of the bankruptcy of Westinghouse on our fixed price construction contract, the results of our evaluation of the cost and time to complete the project, and Santee Cooper’s decision to suspend construction, abandonment was the prudent decision.”
SCE&G will likely refile the petition after government officials have had the chance to review the project’s closure. Restarting the project would require a number of elements, including a willing partner to take over Santee Cooper’s share.
The company announced it would abandon the project after co-owner and state-owned Santee Cooper quit the project last month.
The owners’ lead contractor, Westinghouse Electric Company filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, which led to the project’s abandonment.
Together, the energy companies have spent approximately $9 billion on the project.
House and Senate committees to review the project shutdown will begin hearings next week. Lawmakers plan to consider the decade-old Bases Load Review Act, which made it easier for utilities to hike rates to fund projects, whether they reached completion or not.
*An initial report said SCE&G made its abandonment petition in late July. The company filed its petition on August 1.