Georgia Watch going to court over Plant Vogtle vote

By Dave Williams  – Atlanta Business Chronicle

A consumer advocacy group is going to court to challenge the Georgia Public Service Commission’s (PSC) decision to let Georgia Power Co. finish the $25 billion nuclear expansion at Plant Vogtle.

Atlanta-based Georgia Watch announced Thursday that a law firm headed by former Gov. Roy Barnes has agreed to represent the group at no charge in its appeal of the PSC’s December vote on the planned addition of two reactors at the plant south of Augusta, Ga.

While the PSC is requiring Georgia Power to absorb some of the massive cost overruns plaguing the project prompted in part by years of scheduling delays, commissioners rejected a recommendation by the agency’s staff to set a cap of $9 billion on Georgia Power’s 45 percent share of the project’s costs. Georgia Power is one of four utility partners building the Vogtle expansion.

“The commission’s decision puts nearly all of the higher cost burden and risks of further cost increases on the backs of Georgia consumers, said Liz Coyle, Georgia Watch’s executive director.

Three other organizations filed a joint appeal challenging the PSC vote on Plant Vogtle last month: the Southern Environmental Law Center, the Partnership for Southern Equity and Georgia Interfaith Power and Light.

Under the latest timetable, the two reactors are due to go into service in 2021 and 2022.

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Source: Atlanta Business Chronicle