The construction of Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 continues to be well-managed and is progressing toward Georgia Power's goal of providing a safe, reliable, clean and cost-effective source of electricity that will provide stable prices and improve Georgia's neighborhoods and communities for generations to come.
The new Vogtle units will further the achievement of both our nation's goal of energy independence, and our customers' goal of a diverse, cost-efficient portfolio of electricity sources.
Just as our customers depend on us to deliver reliable, affordable energy that is cleaner and safer, we are committed to making a prudent investment on behalf of our customers.
The units represent $4 billion in economic value for our customers over the next best available option. Through Dec. 31, 3012, Georgia Power has invested $2.21 billion in the facility and significant construction progress is being made.
Georgia Power currently projects that the total impact on customer rates will be approximately 6-8 percent, less than what was projected when the units were originally certified in 2009.
As a result of the Georgia Nuclear Energy Financing Act and the Georgia Public Service Commission's (PSC) Certification Order authorizing Construction Work In Progress (CWIP) in rate base, substantially all of the facility investment is expected to be included in rate base by the time the facility goes into service, thus eliminating significant rate increases at that time.
We have identified additional customer benefits. Some of those additional benefits have already been put in place for our customers and are reflected in the above estimates of lifecycle costs and rate impacts. Specifically, we anticipate customer benefits of approximately $1.0 billion resulting from:
- including CWIP in rate base
- amending the EPC Agreement to lock in low commodity costs
- capturing the advantages of historically low interest costs
Georgia Power is also in position to provide up to an additional $1.0 billion of customer benefits through production tax credits and additional interest savings, including positioning the company to take advantage of Department of Energy loan guarantees. These interest savings provide benefits to customers by lowering financing costs on all company investments, including Vogtle 3 and 4.
The new Vogtle units represent one of the largest and most capital intensive infrastructure projects currently underway in the United States, representing a $14 billion capital investment in Georgia's economy. Over 5,000 jobs are being created, with 2,300 workers currently on the Vogtle site. The facility has increased the tax base of Burke County as well as the state of Georgia and will continue to do so by creating over 800 full-time, highly skilled and highly paid careers, which will have a compounding effect on the local economy.