For Immediate Release: February 7, 2018
"THE LATEST DATA ON EXELON'S FINANCES IS TELLING, AND ONLY CONFIRMS WHAT MANY HAVE WORRIED COULD HAPPEN WITH PSEG IF IT GETS A NUCLEAR SUBSIDY OF ITS OWN"
Trenton, NJ - Matt Fossen, spokesperson for the NJ Coalition for Fair Energy, released the following statement today after a new earnings report from Exelon Corporation showed the company was doubling its rate of dividend growth from 2.5% to 5% while acknowledging that this was in part thanks to recently secured nuclear subsidies in Illinois and New York:
“The latest data on Exelon’s finances is telling, and only confirms what many have worried could happen with PSEG if it gets a nuclear subsidy of its own in New Jersey. The figures show that not only did Exelon get richer because of nuclear subsidies in Illinois and New York, the result was increased returns for company shareholders. This is not what subsidies are meant for, nor is it what ‘necessary assistance’ looks like. What Exelon calls a subsidy is in fact a wealth transfer, at the expense of ratepayers and to the sole benefit of investors - and there is no reason to assume PSEG wouldn’t do the same in New Jersey if it gets its way.”
The relation between Exelon’s nuclear subsidies and increased dividends has been well-documented, raising several questions about where ratepayer dollars go. Such concerns have been echoed in New Jersey, where PSEG is vying for a nuclear subsidy which will cost over $300 million per year and translate to an extra $41 annually on consumers’ energy bills. A recent study by Energyzt Advisors confirmed that PSEG’s New Jersey nuclear plants “have always been profitable and will continue to be so through at least 2021,” and further found that - like Exelon - a subsidy “will simply flow to the equity investors.”
“The bottom line is we’ve seen this experiment run several times before, and the result is always the same,” concluded Fossen. “When you give massive ratepayer-funded subsidies to nuclear plants that are demonstrably profitable, the money always flows to investors while ratepayers get robbed blind. Exelon’s newest data confirms this, and all the available evidence shows PSEG would be no different.”