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Power plant denied permit to expand spent fuel storage

6/11/2016 | Real Estate Blog

A nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania was not allowed to expand its spent fuel storage facility after applying for a permit to do so. Talen Generation LLC applied for a building permit for its nuclear power plant, Susquehanna Steam. The company wanted to expand the power plant’s existing spent fuel storage facility by 22,000 square feet so that it would be able to meet its future storage needs.

The Salem Township zoning officer said that Talen’s permit application was denied because hazardous waste storage is not allowed in the I-3 Special Industrial District that the company is located in. The company appealed the permit denial, and a hearing was scheduled to take place on April 19.

According to a spokesman for Talen, Susquehanna Steam has so far been making do with the spent fuel storage facility that it already has inside the power plant perimeter. However, the power plant will have nowhere to put its spent fuel in the coming years if it does not line up more storage space for the radioactive material. The problem is not unique to Susquehanna Steam, and nuclear plants around the country are waiting for the federal government to approve a storage site for nuclear waste. One of the locations that the federal government is considering for nuclear waste storage is in Nevada.

A real estate investor may want to consider the zoning ordinances that apply to a particular piece of property before purchasing it. If a property cannot be developed in certain ways, the property may be of much less value to an investor. However, even if zoning laws seem limiting, a property owner can sometimes apply for zoning variances that will allow plans to proceed.

Source:, “Nuclear plant owner appealing permit denial for spent fuel storage expansion,” Elizabeth Skrapits, April 18, 2016