Two environmental groups are challenging a decision by South Carolina regulators to approve Dominion Energy’s purchase of South Carolina Electric & Gas (SCE&G) parent company SCANA and continue charging ratepayers for a failed nuclear project.
The Post and Courier reports the Friends of the Earth and Sierra Club are asking the Public Service Commission to reconsider their decision which would have SCE&G customers pay $2.3 billion over the next 20 years for pre-2015 costs on the abandoned nuclear reactors at the VC Summer plant.
It’s unlikely that regulators will reverse their own decision, but the move clears the way for an appeal to the state Supreme Court.
The two groups that have battled against SCE&G throughout the decade-long nuclear project. The PSC approved SCANA’s sale earlier this month and set the nuclear-related power rates under the deal, leaving them at the reduced level approved by legislators this summer.
While PSC commissioners set March 2015 as the date after which SCANA could no longer recoup “prudently” spent nuclear costs, they purposely avoided stating that the utility misled them. The environmental groups said the commissioners should have made a judgment on SCANA’s handling of the project.