SCANA shares near two-year low
According to a SEC filing on September 27, 2017, South Carolina Electric & Gas Company, SCANA’s principal subsidiary, announced that it sold its future guaranty settlement payments worth $2.17 billion to Citibank. It received the payments from Toshiba. Toshiba is the parent company of the now-bankrupt Westinghouse. It was the principal contractor of the V.C. Summer nuclear plant that SCANA was building. Westinghouse’s bankruptcy was a big blow for SCANA. The cost of the nuclear power plant rose above $20 billion. Currently, SCANA has stopped the nuclear power plant’s construction.
More trouble for SCANA
SCANA received a subpoena from the U.S. Attorney’s office in South Carolina last week seeking documents related to the V.C. Summer power plant. The criminal investigation regarding the halted power plant might make its rate recovery even more intricate.
Westinghouse was the principal contractor of Southern Company’s (SO) Vogtle nuclear power plant in Georgia. After Westinghouse’s bankruptcy, Southern Company decided to finish the half-constructed power plant. State regulators are reviewing the utility’s proposal and will give a final call by February 2018.
The share of nuclear generation in the US has been falling in the past few years. Nuclear plants are becoming operationally inefficient, likely due to lower natural gas prices and renewables’ aggressive penetration.