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          moreby Nyamekye Daniel

 

An expansion of the Georgia Power and Southern Nuclear plant in Waynesboro may be delayed once more.

Georgia Power and Southern Nuclear are building two additional nuclear energy facilities, Plant Vogtle Unit 3 and Unit 4. The project, which started in 2013, is supposed to accommodate the state’s growing population

It has been riddled with delays.

Now, construction quality issues and productivity problems may lead to another three-month delay, an independent monitor said Thursday.

This is the fourth schedule shift in the past six months. Unit 3 was supposed to be operational by 2016, and Unit 4 by 2017. Now, Don Grace, vice president of engineering for the Vogtle Monitoring Group, said Unit 3 will not likely be operational until the last quarter of 2022, and Unit 4 may not be ready by the first quarter of 2024, reflecting a four-to-five month shift.

Officials blame “productivity challenges” and the need for “additional time for testing and quality assurance” for the new delays.

The original price tag for the project was $14 billion, but it was last estimated to cost around $27 billion for all parties involved. Georgia Power said the updated schedule may result in a $1 billion increase. In October, the company said its projected cost alone would now be $9.2 billion.

The Georgia Public Service Commission is still trying to determine how much of the cost will be passed on to ratepayers. Under its current agreement with the Public Service Commission, Georgia Power will not recover about $694 million from consumers.

Officials said in October that every month of delay in the project equates to “an incrementally lower return, which translates to lower bill impacts during construction.”

Georgia Power customers already cover a share of construction costs. Rates have increased up to 3.4%. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the average price for a residential customer in Georgia is 10.49 cents per kilowatt-hour. EIA data shows that the average commercial customer pays 9.96 cents per kilowatt-hour, and industrial customers pay an average of 5.55 cents per kilowatt-hour.

Company officials said the new units would contribute to their net-zero carbon emissions goals and create 800 permanent jobs. Georgia Power said customers are expected to save about $556 million in financing costs overall, in the long run, they said.

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Nyamekye Daniel reports for The Center Square, she has been a journalist for five years. She was the managing editor for the South Florida Media Network and a staff writer for The Miami Times. Daniel’s work has also appeared in the Sun-Sentinel, Miami Herald and The New York Times.
Photo “Vogtle Unit 3” by Nuclear Regulatory Commission. CC BY 2.0.

 

 

 

 

 

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Tags: delays georgia power georgia public service commission jobs plant vogtle unit 3 plant vogtle unit 4 southern nuclear u s energy information administration public service commission officials said be operational nuclear plant the average the project the georgia the project supposed the georgia

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Georgia Students Place in National School Bus Safety Poster Contest

Four Georgia students placed in the 2021-2022 National School Bus Safety Poster Contest, State School Superintendent Richard Woods announced.

The contest is an initiative sponsored by the American School Bus Council (ASBC).

Congratulations to the following students:

  • Emma Adcock, David Perdue Primary, Houston County School District – Division 1 (Grades K-2) First Place
  • Jada Fitzgerald, Worth County Elementary, Worth County School District – Division 2 (Grades 3-5) Second Place
  • Claire Hwang, Northbrook Middle School, Gwinnett County Public Schools – Division 3 (Grades 6-8) Second Place
  • Kamil Samnani, Hull Middle School, Gwinnett County Public Schools – Division 4 (Special Education, Grades K-12) First Place

Emma Adcock Division 1 First Place / GaDoe

Jada Fitzgerald Division 2 Second Place / GaDOE

Claire Hwang Division 3 Second Place / GaDOE

Kamil Samnani Division 4 First Place / GaDOE

The theme for this year’s contest was “1 Bus + 1 Driver = a BIG Impact on Education.” School buses and their drivers are symbols of our education community. School bus drivers are invaluable to our education system, and their work is honorable. While change is inevitable, school buses and drivers remain a steady and knowing presence in the lives of many children; all you need is one driver and one bus to impact the lives of many children significantly.

“I wish to congratulate these four students and thank them for representing the state of Georgia so well on the national level – and for drawing attention to the important issue of school bus safety,” Superintendent Woods said. “Each day, Georgia’s school transportation employees work hard to ensure students’ safety as they travel to and from school – as Georgians, we can all partner together to ensure all students are safe on the road.”

Poster Contest judges based their votes on safety impact, originality, artistic quality, and visual impact. The judges awarded these four students votes securing their winning placement among entries from five divisions with posters submitted from 15 states.

The 2022-23 poster contest theme will be Safely Rolling to My Destination; entries for the 2022-23 National School Bus Safety poster contest may be submitted any time between August 15, 2022 and March 31, 2023. Artwork created for and evaluated as part of the poster contest becomes the theme for the subsequent National School Bus Safety Week. This annual event is held during the third full week in October each year.

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