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Environment groups slam plan to reopen Michigan nuclear plant

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Dozens of environmental groups submitted a letter to federal energy officials Friday imploring them to deny funding to a New Jersey company seeking to reopen a west Michigan nuclear plant.

The Palisades Power Plant should not be eligible for the Civil Nuclear Credit Program, a $6 billion fund created through the bipartisan infrastructure law, the groups argued in a Friday letter addressed to US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and Department of Energy officials.

That’s because Palisades shut down permanently in May, according to its new owner Holtec International and former owner Entergy Nuclear. The federal program states nuclear power reactors must be projected to cease operations because of economic factors — which the environmental groups argue does not include Palisades because it is no longer producing or selling electricity.

“It is unequivocally clear that the (program envisions) subsidizing only operating reactors under the Civil Nuclear Credit Program,” the letter from environmental groups states. “The program simply does not contemplate funding a closed reactor that has terminated operations.”

The Michigan Sierra Club, Michigan Wildlife Conservancy, Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council and anti-nuclear groups across Michigan and the United States signed on to the letter.

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