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Nuclear power expansion study under consideration in Michigan Senate

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

A proposal to study the expansion of nuclear energy in Michigan is heading to the state Senate after clearing the House of Representatives by a wide margin this week.

Republican Representative Graham Filler of DeWitt said the study is especially urgent because of the planned closure of a nuclear power plant in western Michigan by the end of this month.

“Personally, I'm a big fan of nuclear energy. Clean, emission-free, safe, reliable. And just be aware we have coal plants in Michigan that are going to be taken offline soon, and that base load will be quickly lost,” he said.

“One of my personal goals to make Michigan a key nuclear energy state. But what does that mean really, I want to attract researchers, I want to track more labs, nuclear manufacturing. I want that all but right now, I'll just settle for a very important study," said Filler

The Palisades is one of three nuclear power plants in Michigan, and Governor Gretchen Whitmer is seeking federal funding to keep it open.

Although nuclear power generation does not directly emit the greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming, some environmentalists worry about toxic nuclear waste.

The bill does not include a funding source for the study, which would need to be completed within 18 months.

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