The Vermont Public Utility Commission has given final approval for the sale of the shuttered Vermont Yankee nuclear plant to a New York company that specializes in shutting down and dismantling reactors.
The commission’s order transfers the plant’s license from its current New Orleans-based owner, Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee, to Northstar Group Services, Inc., which has promised to fast track plans to dismantle the plant.
NorthStar said it was committed to beginning decontamination and dismantlement of the plant by 2021. The company promises to remove most above-ground structures at the plant site, remove underground structures to a depth of at least four feet and regrade and reseed the plant site by 2030.
Entergy had proposed delaying the clean up until at least 2053 and possibly as late as 2068, according tro the commission’s order.
Spent fuel will be stored in the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (“ISFSI”) area until the U.S. Department of Energy removes it from the site.
“We are very pleased with the efforts of all parties and the level of informed public involvement in this proceeding,” said Commissioner Margaret Cheney. “We are satisfied that approving the transfer and moving forward with the accelerated cleanup schedule for the Vermont Yankee site is in the best interests of the people of Vernon and the State of Vermont.”
Vermont Yankee in Vernon closed in 2014 after 42 years in operation. The license transfer, which has been in the works for more than two years, was approved by the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission in October.