ATLANTA, March 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Georgia Power announced today the completion of another major milestone in the construction of Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 near Waynesboro, Ga. On Saturday, the project team successfully placed the CA20 module into the Unit 3 nuclear island. Weighing more than 2.2 million pounds, or 1,100 tons, and towering more than five stories tall, the module is the heaviest "lift" of the project to date. With a footprint of approximately 67 feet long by 47 feet wide, the critical module will house various plant components, including the used fuel storage area.
Including assembly activities at both CB&I's Lake Charles facility and onsite at Plant Vogtle, the module was assembled from prefabricated wall and floor sections and transported to the site by rail and truck for placement. It was lifted into place using a 560-foot tall heavy lift derrick, one of the largest cranes in the world.
Visible progress continues to be evident for both units 3 and 4, which use Westinghouse's state-of-the-art AP1000® technology and are among the first new nuclear units to be built in the United States in 30 years. Since Jan. 1, the project has marked several other major milestones including the February placement of the 460-ton CR10 module (or cradle) into the Unit 4 nuclear island. The CR10 module, which resembles a concave bowl with a hollow center, is the structure upon which the unit's containment vessel bottom head (CVBH) will rest.
The Vogtle 3 and 4 expansion is part of Georgia Power's long-term, strategic plan for providing safe, clean, reliable and affordable energy for Georgians over the next 60 years. On Feb. 28, the Company filed the combined 9th and 10th Vogtle Construction Monitoring (VCM) Report with the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) which reports that the construction of the new units is progressing well with both units scheduled to begin commercial operation by the end of 2018. The report also recapped 2013 project milestones including the placement of nuclear concrete for both units 3 and 4 and the placement of the CVBH and reactor vessel cavity (CA04) for Unit 3. Once the units enter service, fuel efficiencies from nuclear generation combined with ongoing customer benefits such as the recently finalized federal loan guarantees, are expected to put downward pressure on customer rates – cementing the project's status as the most economic choice for meeting Georgia's future energy needs.
The project is the largest job-producing project in the state, employing approximately 5,000 people during peak construction and creating 800 permanent jobs when the plant begins operating. The addition of the two new units will make Plant Vogtle the only four-unit nuclear facility in the country.
Southern Nuclear, a subsidiary of Southern Company, is overseeing construction and will operate the two new 1,100-megawatt AP1000 units for Georgia Power and co-owners Oglethorpe Power Corporation, the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and Dalton Utilities. Georgia Power owns 45.7 percent of the new units.
About Georgia Power
Georgia Power is the largest subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), one of the nation's largest generators of electricity. Value, Reliability, Customer Service and Stewardship are the cornerstones of the company's promise to 2.4 million customers in all but four of Georgia's 159 counties. Committed to delivering clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy at rates below the national average, Georgia Power maintains a diverse, innovative generation mix that includes nuclear, 21st century coal and natural gas, as well as renewables such as solar, hydroelectric and wind. Consistently recognized as a leader in customer service, Georgia Power was recently ranked highest in overall business customer satisfaction among large utilities in the South by J.D. Power and Associates. For more information, visit www.GeorgiaPower.com and connect with the company on Facebook (Facebook.com/GeorgiaPower) and Twitter (Twitter.com/GeorgiaPower).
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:
Certain information contained in this release is forward-looking information based on current expectations and plans that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking information includes, among other things, statements concerning completion of construction, benefits of ongoing construction projects and job creation. Georgia Power Company cautions that there are certain factors that can cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information that has been provided. The reader is cautioned not to put undue reliance on this forward-looking information, which is not a guarantee of future performance and is subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside the control of Georgia Power Company; accordingly, there can be no assurance that such suggested results will be realized. The following factors, in addition to those discussed in Georgia Power Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, and subsequent securities filings, could cause actual results to differ materially from management expectations as suggested by such forward-looking information: the impact of recent and future federal and state regulatory changes, as well as changes in application of existing laws and regulations; current and future litigation against Georgia Power Company; ability to control costs and avoid cost overruns during the development and construction of the Plant Vogtle expansion; ability to construct facilities in accordance with the requirements of permits and licenses, and to satisfy any operational and environmental performance standards; regulatory approvals and actions related to the Plant Vogtle expansion, including Georgia Public Service Commission approvals and Nuclear Regulatory Commission actions; the inherent risks involved in operating and constructing nuclear generating facilities, including environmental, health, regulatory, natural disaster, terrorism, and financial risks; and the ability of counterparties of Georgia Power Company to make payments as and when due and to perform as required. Georgia Power Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking information.
SOURCE Georgia Power