US President Barack Obama will pledge to guarantee more than £5.3bn ($8.3bn) in loans needed to build the first American nuclear power plant in nearly three decades later today.
Obama will make the remarks today after touring a job training centre at the headquarters of Local 26 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in nearby Lanham, Maryland.
The union represents electrical and telecommunications workers, and it offers training useful for energy jobs, including the construction of nuclear power plants.
Obama is expected to announce a total of $8.3bn in federal loan guarantees to build and operate a pair of reactors to be built in Burke, Georgia, by Southern, an administration official said a source close to the deal said on Monday.
Federal loan guarantees are seen as essential to spurring construction of new reactors because of the huge expense. Critics say the guarantees are a form of subsidy that will put taxpayers at risk given the industry’s record of cost overruns and loan defaults.
The reactors, to be built by the Atlanta-based energy company, are part of a White House plan the administration hopes will win Republican support at a time when the public is expressing a desire for lawmakers to work together to solve problems.