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Monticello nuclear plant upgrade costs double

Monticello nuclear plant upgrade costs double Click to Enlarge Photo: Xcel Energy

Jul 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Xcel Energy says the costs of upgrading its Monticello nuclear plant have doubled to $640 million.

The utility revealed the cost in a filing Wednesday with the state Public Utilities Commission, after previously saying the figure was a trade secret.

The project was originally expected to cost $320 million. The recently completed five-year project included replacement of aging equipment and boosting electricity output by 12 percent. The upgrades are intended to extend the life of the 43-year-old reactor another two decades.

Xcel expects to restart the plant this month after a four-month shutdown.

The utility has asked the PUC for a rate hike for 1.2 million Minnesota customers because of the cost overruns, which it blames on the complexity of the project. The commission is expected to decide this fall.

JW Cox

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