One of the Largest U.S. Utilities Gives Up on New Nuclear

(Bloomberg) -- Duke Energy Corp., one of the largest U.S. utility owners, is giving up on building new nuclear plants.

For the first time since 2005, the company didn’t include the prospect of adding more reactors to its fleet in long-term plans filed with state regulators Wednesday.

The move comes about a year after Duke canceled plans to build a nuclear plant in South Carolina and as reactors around the U.S. struggle to compete with cheap natural gas and renewable energy. About a quarter of the country’s nuclear plants have failed to break even since 2012, according to Bloomberg NEF.

One of the Largest U.S. Utilities Gives Up on New Nuclear

To be clear, Duke isn’t walking away from nuclear power altogether. The company plans to continue operating -- and consider extending licenses for -- its existing 12 reactors in the Carolinas.

“Nuclear is still very much an important part of our diverse generation mix,” Meredith Archie, a Duke spokeswoman, said in an interview. “All of the plants in our fleet are good candidates for license renewal.”

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