Can Coal, Nuclear Power Plants Be Saved?

Can Coal, Nuclear Power Plants Be Saved?
AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar

It's no secret that U.S. nuclear and coal-fired power plants are struggling to remain viable in competitive markets. Many plants have been retired for economic reasons long before the facilities reached the end of their useful lives. Some experts believe this trend poses a threat to the nation's power grid and national security.

President Trump has tried to offer support for reliable baseload power generators. In September 2017, Energy Secretary Rick Perry proposed a “Grid Resiliency Pricing Rule.” In it, he directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to require that independent system operators and regional transmission organizations “establish just and reasonable rates” for wholesale electricity sales “to ensure that the reliability and resiliency attributes of generation with on-site fuel supplies are fully valued.” However, FERC rejected the rule in January 2018.

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