After two and a half years of negotiations, just when it looked like Duke Energy would buy a portion of a new nuclear plant in South Carolina, the company announced it has cut off negotiations.
Duke had been looking to purchase a share of two nuclear units being built at the V.C. Summer station near Jenkinsville, South Carolina—one of the first new nuclear plants in decades, projected to cost roughly $10 billion. Duke began talks in 2011 with the minority owner, power company Santee Cooper for a 10 percent stake and looked poised to pull the trigger. Santee Cooper’s board voted today to sell a portion of the project.
But, it turns out, not to Duke and not 10 percent. It will transfer five percent to South Carolina utility SCG&E, which already owns the majority of project.
Duke filed a notice with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it has ended negotiations with Santee Cooper—a spokesman said the companies couldn’t agree to terms. Duke will continue to move forward with plans to build two new reactors at the Lee Nuclear Station in Cherokee County, South Carolina.