Duke Energy’s decision to dismantle a Florida nuclear power plant rather than undertake the costliest- ever U.S. atomic repair shows how rapidly cheap natural gas is remaking the U.S. power industry, hastening a shift from traditional fuels such as coal and uranium.
Progress Energy Inc., which is proposing to build nuclear reactors in Florida, may face greater scrutiny and delays than other utilities, due to Japan’s nuclear disaster last year, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko said.
The difference between the value of Duke Energy Corp.’s all-stock offer and Progress Energy Inc.’s share price widened after the companies said federal regulators may rule as early as today on a proposal to ease competitive concerns stemming from Duke’s $17 billion acquisition.
A damaged Florida nuclear plant that spurred a boardroom coup at Duke Energy Corp. in July risks getting scrapped unless the power company can justify spending more than $1.3 billion on the costliest-ever U.S. atomic repair.
Duke Energy Corp. will buy Progress Energy Inc. for $13.7 billion in stock, creating the largest U.S. utility and increasing its ability to build new power plants to meet future greenhouse-gas emissions limits.