Thursday, June 11, 2009

Maryland PSC: More Review of France Nuclear Proposal

The Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) has ordered further review of Constellation Energy Group Inc.'s plan to sell half its nuclear business to Electricité de France SA (EdF).

Besides buying half of Constellation's nuclear-power business for $4.5 billion, EDF has an option to buy up to $2 billion of Constellation Energy's nonnuclear power plants. The Center was not aware of this provision. Although we have supported the purchase by EdF up to this point, this new information is something that we will have to consider.

The $4.5 billion deal would give the French state-controlled company "substantial influence" over Constellation Energy's regulated utility, Baltimore Gas & Electric Co. The commission ordered additional review to determine if the deal is in the public interest. The MD PSC has not decided whether the deal should go through.

EdF is one of Constellation Energy's largest shareholders and has a joint venture with the company to build new nuclear power plants in the U.S. In addition to the Calvert Cliffs plant in Maryland, Constellation also owns and operates two reactors at Nine Mile Point and one reactor at R.E. Ginna in upstate New York.

The proposed transaction has won approval from the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and New York state regulators, but awaits a decision from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. (WSJ, 6/11/09)

Maryland PSC Commissioners

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