List Of Nuclear Power Plants In The US: Locations And Capacities

by | Apr 27, 2024 | Nuclear Energy, Renewable Energy

Home » Renewable Energy » List Of Nuclear Power Plants In The US: Locations And Capacities

Nuclear power has always been a divisive issue, with disputes about safety, environmental effects, and the future of energy supply. For decades, nuclear power plants in the United States have played an essential role in the energy landscape, generating a significant part of the country’s electricity. Despite the problems and controversy surrounding nuclear energy, there are compelling reasons to reconsider its place and potential in the US energy mix.

The Legacy of Power and Controversy

Both successes and failures define the history of nuclear power plants in the United States. The first commercial nuclear power plant, the Shipping Port Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, began operations in 1958, ushering in a new age of energy generation. Over the next several decades, the United States extended its nuclear fleet, with dozens more reactors coming online nationwide. However, the 1979 Three Mile Island accident and the 1986 Chernobyl tragedy placed a pall over the sector, heightening worries about the safety and environmental risks linked with nuclear energy. These accidents heightened regulatory scrutiny, increased public awareness, and slowed the development of new nuclear reactors.

nuclear power plants in the us

Source: EIA

Challenges and Opportunities

Today, the US nuclear fleet faces numerous obstacles. Many nuclear power facilities need help financially due to ageing infrastructure, high operating costs, and competition from low-cost natural gas and renewable energy sources. Several plants have closed prematurely in recent years, raising concerns about the loss of carbon-free power generation and its impact on climate change.

Despite these limitations, nuclear power has the potential to play an essential part in the United States’ energy transition. Nuclear energy is a low-carbon source of electricity that produces almost no greenhouse gases during operation. As the need to cut carbon emissions to combat climate change grows, nuclear power is vital for decarbonizing the electrical industry.

Furthermore, advances in nuclear technology hold the potential for safer and more efficient reactors. Next-generation designs, such as small modular reactors (SMRs) and advanced molten salt reactors, can overcome many of the issues raised by traditional nuclear plants, including safety, proliferation, and waste management.

Also Read: What Is Nuclear Power Waste And How It Is Processed?

Economic Considerations

While nuclear power confronts economic problems, such as high initial costs and competition from less expensive options, it also provides significant financial benefits to the communities where facilities are located. Nuclear power plants provide jobs, generate tax income, and help local economies, making them critical contributors to regional prosperity.

As of August 1, 2023, the United States had 93 nuclear reactors spread across 54 nuclear power plants in 28 states. Among these plants, 19 have a single reactor, 31 have two reactors, and 4 have three reactors. Since 1990, nuclear energy has consistently provided about 20% of the total annual electricity in the U.S.

In 2021, 33 countries had commercial nuclear power plants, with 15 of these countries deriving at least 20% of their total annual electricity generation from nuclear energy. The United States had the largest nuclear power generation capacity and produced more nuclear electricity than any other country.

Furthermore, nuclear power provides energy security by lowering reliance on imported fossil fuels, susceptible to price volatility and geopolitical threats. By diversifying the energy mix and improving grid stability, nuclear energy can help assure a consistent electricity supply, even during high demand or outages in other sources.

List of Nuclear Power Plants in the US: Locations and Capacities

Power Station Unit Capacity (MW) Location
Arkansas Nuclear One (ANO) 2 1,839 Clark Township, Pope County, near Russellville, Arkansas
Beaver Valley Power Station 2 1,738 Shippingport, Beaver County, Pennsylvania
Braidwood Generating Station 2 2,330 Reed Township, Will County, Illinois
Browns Ferry Nuclear Power Plant 3 3,300 Athens, Limestone County, Alabama
Brunswick nuclear power plant 2 1,858 Smithville Township, Brunswick County, North Carolina, near Southport, North Carolina
Byron Nuclear Generating Station 2 2,300 Rockvale Township, Ogle County, near Byron, Illinois
Callaway Plant 1 1,190 Callaway County, Missouri
Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant (CCNPP) 2 1,735 Calvert County, near Lusby, Maryland
Catawba Nuclear Station 2 2,258 York, York County, South Carolina
Clinton Power Station 1 1,043 Harp Township, DeWitt County, near Clinton, Illinois
Columbia Generating Station 1 1,107 Benton County, near Richland, Washington
Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant 2 2,367 Somervell County, near Glen Rose, Texas
Cooper Nuclear Station 1 770 Nemaha County, near Brownville, Nebraska
Davis–Besse Nuclear Power Station 1 965 Carroll Township, Ottawa County, near Oak Harbor, Ohio
Diablo Canyon Power Plant 2 2,240 San Luis Obispo County, California
Donald C. Cook Nuclear Plant 2 2,069 Lake Township, Berrien County, near Bridgman, Michigan
Dresden Nuclear Power Plant 2 1,734 Goose Lake Township, Grundy County, near Morris, Illinois
Edwin Irby Hatch Nuclear Power Plant 2 1,759 Baxley, Appling County, Georgia
Enrico Fermi Nuclear Generating Station 1 1,122 Frenchtown Charter Township, Monroe County, Michigan
Ginna Nuclear Power Plant 1 610 Ontario, New York
Grand Gulf Nuclear Station 1 1,419 Claiborne County, near Port Gibson, Mississippi
Robinson Nuclear Plant 1 735 Darlington County, near Hartsville, South Carolina
Hope Creek Nuclear Generating Station 1 1,191 Lower Alloways Creek, Salem County, New Jersey
James A. FitzPatrick (JAF) Nuclear Power Plant 1 838 Scriba, Oswego County, near Oswego, New York
Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Generating Plant 2 1,711 Dothan, Alabama
LaSalle County Nuclear Generating Station 2 2,238 Brookfield Township, LaSalle County, near Marseilles, Illinois
Limerick Generating Station 2 2,264 Limerick Township, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania
McGuire Nuclear Station 2 2,200 Mecklenburg County, near Huntersville, North Carolina
Millstone Nuclear Power Station 3 2,102 Waterford, New London County, Connecticut
Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant 1 647 Monticello, Wright County, Minnesota
Nine Mile Point Nuclear Station 2 1,764 Scriba, Oswego County, New York
North Anna Nuclear Generating Station 2 1,875 Louisa County, near Mineral, Virginia
Oconee Nuclear Station 3 2,538 Oconee County, near Seneca, South Carolina
Palo Verde Generating Station 3 3,942 Tonopah, Arizona
Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station 2 2,234 Delta, York County, Pennsylvania
Perry Nuclear Power Plant 1 1,240 North Perry, Lake County, Ohio
Point Beach Nuclear Plant 2 1,182 Town of Two Creeks, Manitowoc County, near Two Rivers, Wisconsin
Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant 2 1,114 Red Wing, Goodhue County, Minnesota
Quad Cities Generating Station 2 1,774 Cordova Township, Rock Island County, near Cordova, Illinois
River Bend Nuclear Generating Station 1 967 West Feliciana Parish, near St. Francisville, Louisiana
St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant 2 1,678 Port St. Lucie, St. Lucie County, Florida
Salem Nuclear Power Plant 2 2,332 Lower Alloways Creek, Salem County, New Jersey
Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant 1 1,247 Seabrook, New Hampshire
Sequoyah Nuclear Plant 2 2,278 Hamilton County, near Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee
Harris Nuclear Plant 1 964 New Hill, Wake County, North Carolina
South Texas Project Electric Generating Station 2 2,560 Matagorda County, near Bay City, Texas
Surry Power Station 2 1,638 Surry County, near Rushmere, Virginia
Susquehanna Steam Electric Station 2 2,429 Salem Township, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania
Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station 2 1,658 Homestead, Florida, U.S
Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Power Station 1 973 Fairfield County, South Carolina
Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant 3 3,419 Burke County, Georgia
Waterford Steam Electric Station 1 1,168 Killona, St. Charles Parish, Louisiana
Watts Bar Nuclear Plant 2 2,288 Rhea County, near Spring City, Tennessee
Wolf Creek Generating Station 1 1,160 Hampden Township, Coffey County, near Burlington, Kansas

In conclusion, nuclear power plants have been a staple of the US energy landscape for decades, providing millions of Americans with dependable, low-carbon electricity. While the sector faces economic viability and public image obstacles, nuclear energy has excellent promise as a crucial contributor to a sustainable energy future. By embracing innovation, reducing regulation, encouraging public acceptability, and incentivizing deployment, the United States can realize nuclear power’s full potential and ensure that it remains an essential component of the country’s energy mix for future generations. As we face the pressing challenge of climate change, nuclear power is poised to play a vital role in enabling a cleaner, more sustainable future.

Also Read: Nuclear Waste Disposal Challenges

 

Author

  • Michael Thompson

    Michael Thompson is an esteemed expert in the renewable energy sector, with a profound experience spanning over 25 years. His expertise encompasses various sustainable energy solutions, including solar, wind, hydroelectric, and energy efficiency practices. Michael discusses the latest trends in renewable energy and provides practical advice on energy conservation.

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1 Comment

  1. Nick

    Your list is missing the Nuclear Facility in Springfield. It provides renewable energy for that state and all the surrounding states.

    Reply

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