Matzie issues statement on Three Mile Island planned shutdown

HARRISBURG, May 8 – State Rep. Rob Matzie, D-Beaver/Allegheny, issued the following statement today in response to Exelon Generation’s statement that it will cease operations at its Three Mile Island nuclear plant.

“It’s disappointing to hear that Exelon is continuing down this path, when a minimal investment in their own plant would afford us the time in the legislature to work on a solution that would be fair to all,” Matzie said. 

“Let’s be clear, the federal government has shirked its responsibility to the nuclear industry and foisted that burden onto the state. We have had less than two months to examine and internally debate legislation that is as complex and as far reaching as anything we’ve seen in decades. We responded with a sense of urgency by holding no less than four hearings and countless meetings focusing on legislation that, by any assessment, is not guaranteed to save TMI and does nothing to protect workers or the community.

“Make no mistake, when the nuclear industry asks the legislature to ‘value carbon-free energy,’ they mean asking the ratepayers of Pennsylvania for $3 billion. They should expect to have that request thoroughly vetted.

“What’s more, in my opinion, there has been significant movement toward a potential resolution over the last few weeks, making this announcement even more concerning. Regardless, I remain committed to working toward a policy that balances the burden on ratepayers with the objective of preserving jobs while ensuring that nuclear power remains a part of our diverse energy portfolio for years to come. 

“As the co-chairman of the bicameral, bipartisan Nuclear Caucus and as the Democratic chairman of the Consumer Affairs Committee, there has been no member who has worked on raising the awareness of the importance of nuclear energy more than me. 

“However, as a minority chairman and member of the minority party, I have no control over the legislative calendar, whether in committee or in the House chamber. Nevertheless, I will continue to pursue a solution that ultimately is given due consideration by our committee and our legislative body as a whole, a solution that solidifies our commitment to a diverse, reliable energy portfolio. Our workers and our communities deserve nothing less,” Matzie said.