Nuclear plant owners expand search for rescue to more states


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The natural gas boom that’s hammered coal mines and driven down utility bills is now hitting nuclear power plants. That’s spurring nuclear power plant owners to press lawmakers in Connecticut, New Jersey, Ohio and Pennsylvania for a financial rescue.

Their multi-billion-dollar energy company owners say they want the same preferential treatment given to renewables, like wind and solar.

Opposition to a so-called nuclear bailout is uniting rivals and the natural gas exploration industry. The potential for a hit to utility bills is drawing pushback from the AARP and manufacturers.

Nuclear plant owners already won billions of dollars from Illinois and New York, although it’s being challenged in court.

Analysts say that, with natural gas prices expected to stay low, shutting down nuclear plants may have no impact on electricity bills.