Could Maine Yankee dash for gas?

27 August 1998

Owners of the Maine Yankee nuclear plant (900 MWe PWR) have awarded Stone & Webster Engineering a $250 million decommissioning and decontamination contract. The contract, announced 4 August, includes an option for Stone & Webster to repower Maine Yankee as a natural gas-fired plant, possibly as early as 2002.

This is the first turn-key, fixed price contract in which the decommissioning operations contractor assumes the financial risks. Maine Yankee management will retain an oversight role.

Stone & Webster, which considers Maine Yankee a strong candidate for repowering, said it would enable Maine Yankee to reduce total decommissioning costs, which are estimated at $508 million, including the cost of managing spent nuclear fuel.

David Flanagan, chairman of the Maine Yankee board of directors, said the company is still considering a proposal to sell component parts of the plant. The board rejected a proposal from a group of private investors to resume operations at the site, he said.

Stone & Webster will subcontract part of the work to Babcock & Wilcox Services Inc for waste management services; Radiological Services Inc for radiological controls and health physics; and F W Hake Associates for metal and radwaste processing.

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