NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Link to Fitch Ratings' Report: US Nuclear Retirements Continue Amid Low
Nuclear plant retirements driven by economic and policy headwinds are likely to continue. Based on announced nuclear retirements, Fitch Ratings expects that the amount of retired and retiring gigawatts (GW) will outpace new nuclear plant additions between 2013 and 2025.
Key factors driving the shutdowns include low natural gas prices due to abundant US supply and actual and anticipated penetration of renewable generation and regulatory constructs that do not adequately compensate for nuclear energy's non-emitting attributes.
The recent spate of announced nuclear facility retirements is not surprising in light of the depth and duration of the current extended downturn in wholesale power prices and policy challenges faced by nuclear plant operators. Plant closings appear likely to continue unless there are policy changes to address market structures and incentives.
While smaller single-unit merchant nuclear facilities are particularly vulnerable, larger rate-regulated and merchant nuclear facilities are also at risk.
For more information on this topic, see Fitch's full rating report on "Pacific Gas and Electric Company," available on our website at www.fitchratings.com.
Additional information is available on www.fitchratings.com.
The above article originally appeared as a post on the Fitch Wire credit market commentary page. The original article, which may include hyperlinks to companies and current ratings, can be accessed at www.fitchratings.com. All opinions expressed are those of Fitch Ratings.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (A Subsidiary of PG&E Corp.)