AP NEWS

The Latest: Nuclear power era comes to end in Massachusetts

May 31, 2019
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Warning signs are posted near a gate to the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, in Plymouth, Mass., Tuesday, May 28, 2019. The operators of the nuclear plant performed a simulated shutdown at a training facility several miles from the reactor Tuesday, in advance of the actual shutdown of the aging reactor planned for Friday, May 31. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
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Warning signs are posted near a gate to the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, in Plymouth, Mass., Tuesday, May 28, 2019. The operators of the nuclear plant performed a simulated shutdown at a training facility several miles from the reactor Tuesday, in advance of the actual shutdown of the aging reactor planned for Friday, May 31. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

PLYMOUTH, Mass. (AP) — The Latest on the shutdown of the Pilgrim nuclear power plant (all times local):

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6:25 p.m.

The Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth has permanently shut down after 47 years of generating electricity.

The final shutdown occurred at 5:28 p.m. Friday.

Entergy, which owns the plan, announced in 2015 it would retire Massachusetts’ only remaining nuclear reactor, citing competition from less expensive energy sources.

Entergy had said the shutdown would take about five hours, with technicians reducing Pilgrim’s power output from the current 40% to 26% to about 8% before launching the final step of inserting control rods into the fuel assembly to seal off further nuclear reactions.

The focus now turns to cleaning up and dismantling the plant. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is reviewing Entergy’s proposal to sell Pilgrim to a private nuclear waste management firm that promises a speedier decommissioning.

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5:40 a.m.

It will take about five hours for the Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth to permanently shut down after 47 years of generating electricity.

Entergy announced in 2015 it would retire Massachusetts’ only remaining nuclear reactor, citing competition from less expensive energy sources. The shutdown is scheduled for Friday.

Technicians will begin by reducing Pilgrim’s power output from the current 40% to 26% to about 8%.

At that point workers will press two buttons at once, launching the final step of inserting control rods into the fuel assembly to seal off further nuclear reactions.

Preparations will then begin for cleaning up and dismantling the plant. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is reviewing Entergy’s proposal to sell Pilgrim to a private nuclear waste management firm that promises a speedier decommissioning.