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DeWine Says Nuclear Power Must Be Part Of Ohio's Energy Landscape

FirstEnergy Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio.
Ron Schwane
FirstEnergy Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio.

Ohio lawmakers are debating a plan that would bail out the state’s two aging nuclear energy plants by charging customers more.

Gov. Mike DeWine isn’t weighing in on that proposal yet, but at an Earth Day event in Columbus, he said nuclear energy needs to be a part of Ohio’s short-term energy landscape.

FirstEnergy Solutions filed for bankruptcy, saying it needs state lawmakers to step in and pass a bailout of its nuclear power plants. DeWine says those two facilities are needed.

“You cannot dramatically reduce carbon or keep those numbers down without using nuclear. I’m all for wind and solar. Those are going to continue to move forward, I believe, but you cannot hit the number without using nuclear. So nuclear is an important part of this," DeWine says.

DeWine won’t comment on the specifics of the plan being pushed by Republican House Speaker Larry Householder, which would also wipe out the current requirements for utilities to get power from alternative energy. Many environmentalists do not consider nuclear a form of green energy.