HARRISBURG – Rep. Dave Hickernell (R-Lancaster/Dauphin) today expressed disappointment and sadness on Exelon Corporation’s announcement that Three Mile Island (TMI) nuclear energy station will be shut down. Hickernell represents Londonderry Township, home of Three Mile Island, and issued the following statement:
“My heart truly goes out to the employees and families as I recognize the distress and negative impact this will have on them and our communities around TMI. These folks are my neighbors. I go to church with them, and I witness firsthand the angst and fear this causes them. I fear this is just the beginning of the end of the nuclear industry in Pennsylvania and that other plants will close and we will lose the most reliable and clean form of energy America is currently generating.
“As a member of the bicameral Nuclear Energy Caucus, I did everything I could to save Three Mile Island and the jobs there. I was the second original sponsor on legislation designed to help TMI and the entire nuclear industry, get through some cyclical fluctuations in the energy market and a strong advocate to encourage my colleagues to consider the bill. If we had an industry that wanted to bring 16,000 jobs to Pennsylvania, as a Legislature we would bend over backward to make that happen. But we weren’t willing to do anything to save family-sustaining jobs that are already here.
“TMI alone provided about 700 stable, good-paying jobs. Nuclear power as a whole provides 42% of all of Pennsylvania’s electricity, 93% of our zero-carbon energy emissions and accounts for nearly 16,000 full-time jobs. I believe the decision to allow Three Mile Island to close and perhaps other nuclear facilities is based on short-term energy cost profiles that are unlikely to hold true in the long term. We must think in terms of 25 to 50 years, not the last gas well we tapped or array of solar panels installed.”
Representative Dave Hickernell
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Charles Lardner