WAYNESBORO, Ga. (WJBF) – One of the biggest employers in the entire Augusta area is Plant Vogtle, and progress there keeps moving.
Jeff Wilson with Georgia Power said, “The world has been watching the construction of these units. Definitely, there is a big historic to these units.”
Soon, Burke County will be home to America’s first, four-unit nuclear plant.
“More clean energy, carbon-based energy will be produced here once these units come online than any other facility in the United States. We’ve poured more than 700,000 cubic yards of concrete for Units 3 & 4. And just to put that into context, that could build a sidewalk from Miami, Florida to Seattle, Washington,” said Wilson.
Right now, high-functional tests are being run on Unit three.
Wilson said, “That’s where we basically run the plant systems to make sure they’re operating properly before we load fuel later this summer. So it’s very important for Georgia Power, very important for Burke County, the State of Georgia, and the nuclear industry in general.”
Dick Byne, Waynesboro City Councilman said, “They want to do the right thing for the environment and for the communities they’re in. And they’re very easy to talk to I can very much call them anytime I need them.”
Construction for Unit three is about 98% done while about 20% remains for Unit four. More than 7,000 people are working at Vogtle.
Wilson said, “We’re looking at probably late December to bring Unit three online. Unit four will come online late next year.”
Units one and two have been operating since the 80s– three and four are different and are equipped with AP-1000 technology by Westinghouse Electric.
“It has passive safety systems on it. A lot of systems if you lost cooling of the core then there would be these water tanks that you see behind me on top of these units that would cascade down and keep the core cool for several days,” said Wilson.
Jeff Wilson with Georgia Power says Units three and four will be providing carbon-free energy for decades.
Wilson said, “We want to make communities better because we’re here and we feel like we do that in Burke County. Our employees are very involved in the community, very involved in volunteer efforts, that’s a big of who Georgia Power is and Plant Vogtle is.”
Once construction on units three and four at Plant Vogtle are complete, the site will be the Country’s biggest source of carbon-free energy.