Nuclear Power

Court Won't Let Vermont Close Nuclear Plant

State trying to get around NRC on safety concerns

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Vermont's attempts to close its lone nuclear power plant were deceptive and misleading, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday in largely upholding a lower-court ruling against the state.

State lawmakers had safety in mind — but tried to hide that — when they passed laws in 2005, 2006 and 2008 making it harder for the Vermont Yankee plant to win permission to operate for another 20 years, a three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote.

The plant began operating in 1972 and was bought by New Orleans-based Entergy Corp. in 2002. In the past it has provided as much as a third of the state's electrical supply. Currently, nearly all of its power is shipped to electric companies in neighboring states.