Source: James Conca, Forbes, Nov 25, 2019
Indeed it does. Contrary to claims by those who just don’t like nuclear, every time nuclear plants close, carbon emissions go up. Using opaque financial jargon, grandiose claims for renewables, and political spin, doesn’t change this.
There a number of examples. The unnecessary closing of the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station at the end of 2014 led to an increase in fossil fuel use, specifically natural gas, that completely filled the gap. Same with San Onofre in California.
In a report on the impact of shutting down Indian Point Nuclear Plant, the NYISO said three natural gas plants would replace the lost nuclear power when Indian Point completely shuts down in 2021.
The potential closing of a few more nuclear plants in the North East will increase gas use even more and its concomitant CO2 emissions.
Even environmental groups don’t like this substitution. The environmental group Riverkeeper plans to challenge efforts to replace that nuclear with natural gas.