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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Scana to build 2 nuclear plants in South Carolina


Scana Corp.'s South Carolina Electric & Gas Co. said Tuesday it signed an agreement with Westinghouse Electric Co. LLC and the Shaw Group Inc. to design and build two nuclear power plants in South Carolina for about $9.8 billion.

The company said it will jointly own the plants with Santee Cooper, a state-owned electric and water utility. The two companies already jointly own and share operating costs and generating output of the existing nuclear plant in the area.

The company said under the agreement, it will be responsible for 55 percent of the cost and output of the new plants while Santee Cooper will have 45 percent.

South Carolina Electric & Gas will pay $5.4 billion of the total price for the new plants and Santee Cooper will pay about $4.4 billion, the company added.

Before the plants are built, the companies must receive a license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The two companies submitted an application March 31. The review process takes about three to four years, the companies said.

South Carolina Electric & Gas estimated that the first plant could begin service in 2016 with the second plant following in 2019.

Scana shares rose 32 cents to $40.50 in after-hours trading. During the regular session, shares added 18 cents to close at $40.18.

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