The utility that’s building two of the newest nuclear reactors in the country is considering abandoning the project after the contractor building them announced it was filing for bankruptcy. Westinghouse Electric Co., the U.S. nuclear unit of Japan’s Toshiba Corp., filed for bankruptcy protection in March, calling into question the future of a number of multibillion-dollar nuclear projects, including the two reactors at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station in South Carolina and a similar project at Plant Vogtle in eastern Georgia. South Carolina Electric & Gas Co., owns 55 percent of the plant. For years, its customers have funded the reactor project through a series of rate hikes approved by state regulators. SCE&G has raised electric prices on its customers nearly 20 percent since 2009 to pay for the $14 billion project, which is behind schedule and over the original projected cost. The state-owned utility Santee Cooper owns the other 45 percent, and it’s unknown how ratepayers will be impacted by the Westinghouse bankruptcy. Santee Cooper already has increased rates by 3.7 percent in both 2016 and this year to help pay for the new nuclear units. About 34 percent of construction at the South Carolina site is completed.

– via the Associated Press

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