NGOs petition Department of Energy on Nuclear Energy

January 28, 2014

The Honorable Secretary Ernest Moniz
U.S. Department of Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20585

cc: Office of Management and Budget

RE: VOGTLE LOAN GUARANTEES

Dear Secretary Moniz,

We, the undersigned, are writing to share critical information with you that
has come to our attention, and, in light of the information, request that
you deny federal loan guarantees for construction of the Southern Company¹s
nuclear Plant Vogtle reactors 3 and 4 in Georgia. In addition, we request
that further negotiations on this matter with Southern Company and its
subsidiaries and partners cease.

We are concerned with the fact that, after four years of negotiation no
agreement has been reached between Southern Company, its Vogtle partners and
DOE regarding the requested $8.3 billion tax-funded loan guarantees for
Vogtle. Indeed, even as DOE has extended the deadline for a sixth time to
January 31, 2014, Vogtle partner Municipal Electrical Association of Georgia
(MEAG) is undergoing last-minute corporate structural changes, license
amendment requests from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and contracting
to sell power from Vogtle in Florida and Alabama.

In December 2013, Southern Company asked the NRC to transfer ownership and
control of Vogtle licenses to several Municipal Electric Authority of
Georgia (MEAG) subsidiaries or ³special purpose vehicles² (SPV) requiring an
NRC license amendment. The request was noticed in the Federal Register on
January 21, 2014, with an opportunity to request public hearing and public
comment period. The NRC has affirmed that no staff action will be taken
until the public comment period expires on February 20, 2014. Therefore, the
new MEAG entities cannot be licensed by the NRC prior to the January 31,
2014, loan guarantee closing deadline.

Analysis of 10 years of Georgia Power annual report data filed with the SEC
shows that Georgia Power¹s 4.1% annual growth forecasts have not
materialized, in fact, electricity sales are flat for both retail and
wholesale markets for the 10 year period (2002-2012). The situation has
resulted in Georgia Power currently being 46% over-built, well more than
twice the national standard. The fact that the electricity from additional
reactors at Plant Vogtle is not needed is underscored by MEAG¹s entering
into contracts to sell a significant portion of its commitment to
Jacksonville Electric Authority (Florida) and Power South (Alabama).

The climate for new reactors at Vogtle has changed in other ways since the
loan guarantees were first requested. The anticipated new reactor
construction boom has shriveled to a handful of reactors and the projects in
South Carolina and Georgia are both experiencing significant delays and cost
overruns. Economies of scale have disappeared even as contractors are
failing to deliver and new contractors are having to be developed.
Meanwhile, solar and wind power are setting records for rapid growth,
falling prices, and enjoy the benefit of truly modular deployment. The
trends are clear, and new nuclear power generation, at least in Georgia, is
clearly not a good investment for the American people at this point in time.

Southern Company has publicly stated that it does not need federal loans in
order to complete the project. That being the case, it is unnecessary to
commit taxpayers to a project with a troubled past and inherent risks.
Georgia ratepayers have already been paying the financing costs of Vogtle
via rate increases and construction work in progress (CWIP), therefore, DOE
withdrawal of the loan guarantees will simply allow the companies the
freedom to choose whether to take the risk to invest in Vogtle or to cancel
it since it is not needed.

It is troubling that negotiations continue to be conducted in secrecy
without public input and scrutiny and that Georgia Power classifies
information about itself as proprietary while the federal taxpayer is
saddled with the very real risk of repaying the loan in the event of
default. The credit subsidy fee of 0.5 to 1.5 percent which DOE has offered
to Southern Company, would be insufficient to cover the risks the tax-payers
are being asked to take.

Construction of Vogtle 3 and 4 is 21 months behind schedule, $1.6 billion
over budget, has had significant quality assurance issues, and is embroiled
in lawsuits between the reactor designers and builders. Wall Street has
downgraded partners involved in Vogtle. We urge you to protect the U.S.
taxpayer from risky investment in Vogtle 3 and 4 by not offering federal
loan guarantees to Southern Company, its subsidiaries or partners.

Respectfully,

Ashish Sinha
Program Director
Alliance for Nuclear Accountability
Washington, DC

Louis A. Zeller
Executive Director
Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League
Glendale Springs, NC

David Kyler
Executive Director
Center for a Sustainable Coast
St. Simons Island, GA

Steve Willis
Conservation Chair
Coastal Group of the Georgia Chapter of the Sierra Club
Savannah, GA

Katherine Fuchs
Nuclear Subsidies Campaigner
Friends of the Earth
Washington, DC

Becky D. Rafter
Executive Director
Georgia Women¹s Action for New Directions
Atlanta, GA

Dave Kraft
Director
Nuclear Energy Information Service
Chicago, IL

Tim Judson
Acting Executive Director
Nuclear Information & Resource Service
Takoma Park, MD

Glenn Carroll
Coordinator
Nuclear Watch South
Atlanta, GA

Allison Fisher
Outreach Director
Public Citizen
Washington, DC

Jane Swanson
San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace
San Luis Obispo, CA

Sara Barczak
High Risk Energy Choices Program Director
Southern Alliance for Clean Energy
Knoxville, TN

Ken Bossong
Executive Director
Sun Day Campaign
Takoma Park, MD