Alexander: New Small Nuclear Reactor “Truly Historic”

Says Babcock & Wilcox Co. and TVA Partnership Brings U.S. Closer to 100 New Nuclear Plants in 20 Years

Posted on June 10, 2009

In remarks today at the Babcock & Wilcox Company’s unveiling of its new, small “B&W mPower” nuclear reactor in downtown Washington, D.C., U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) praised both the innovation and the company’s new partnership with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), which he said “is leading the country’s nuclear renaissance as the only utility building a nuclear reactor, and the only utility in the nation to sign a letter of intent to buy this technology.” The mPower reactor, the senator said, “is much less costly to build; can be built in three years, instead of the typical reactor’s six; and is only 125 megawatts, instead of the standard 1,200 megawatts, making it a much simpler electricity option for utilities nationwide.” Traditional nuclear reactors are built on-site, whereas the new mPower reactor will be built in a factory and shipped to the site. Senator Alexander continued: “My plan is to get 100 nuclear reactors up in 20 years, and this exciting new technology brings us that much closer. If we’re going to clean the air, create jobs, and deal with climate change, this innovative technology will help get us there even faster than I anticipated.” The TVA is the only utility in the nation to sign a letter of intent to use Babcock & Wilcox Company’s mPower nuclear reactor, about which Senator Alexander said, “This new reactor is the right thing for TVA. A federal utility like TVA ought to lead the country, and in terms of the nuclear renaissance it certainly is leading the country down the right clean-energy path. TVA’s partnership with Babcock & Wilcox is truly historic.” Alexander is co-chair of the TVA Congressional Caucus and serves on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. The full text of Senator Alexander’s remarks and more information on Babcock & Wilcox Company’s mPower nuclear reactor can be found by contacting the senator’s press office at 202-224-4494.