Vogtle $8.3 billion loan guarantee not resolved

Guest Blog | July 2, 2013 | Press Releases

Atlanta, Ga. (July 2, 2013) ///MEDIA STATEMENT/// Once again the Department of Energy (DOE) failed to meet a deadline by which the agency and Southern Company would finalize the controversial $8.3 billion conditional federal loan guarantee that the Obama Administration offered to the utility giant and its partners over three years ago to support the construction of two proposed new nuclear reactors at the existing Plant Vogtle site near Waynesboro, Georgia. Since March 2010, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE), a non-profit, non-partisan environmental organization working in the Southeastern U.S., has been working to shed light on the details of the offer and the risks posed to U.S. taxpayers through numerous Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and subsequent litigation.

Sara Barczak, a program director with SACE issued this statement when the June 30, 2013 deadline was missed:

“It is extremely frustrating that the Department of Energy continues to court one of the most powerful and influential utility companies by dangling billions and billons of hard-earned taxpayer dollars for a troubled new reactor project that has already experienced cost increases and delays, which have negatively impacted Southern Company’s ratings. This offer was announced nearly three and a half years ago and the nuclear loan guarantee program has operated under an unacceptable shroud of secrecy ever since. Our organization had to enter into extensive litigation for years because DOE refused to go public with the details of these back-room deals making it impossible to know what the risks were to U.S. taxpayers. It’s amazing that even after the devastating nuclear accident in Japan, the aftermath of which is still ongoing for the nuclear industry, DOE continues to try to ‘seal the deal’ for these risky, expensive new reactors. We urge Southern Company and its partners, Oglethorpe Power and MEAG, to do what’s right for the country’s federal taxpayers and walk away from this offer.”

For additional background, please view the report analyzing some of the loan guarantee documents SACE received because of the protracted FOIA litigation released earlier this year, found here, and the supplemental memo. The group has made thousands of pages of documents received publicly available through an online library. For more information on the problems with the Vogtle project, view this factsheet and comments from Taxpayers for Common Sense.


Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices that create global warming solutions and ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at www.cleanenergy.org