INSTITUTE INDEX: Is a nuclear disaster unfolding in Florida?

The location of Florida Power & Light's St. Lucie nuclear power plant. (Map via Wikipedia.)

Number of tubes that help cool a nuclear reactor at Florida Power & Light's St. Lucie plant near Fort Pierce, Fla. that show signs of significant wear: more than 3,700

Number of cooling tubes at other, similar plants that generally show such damage, caused by vibrations that occur during operation: 0 to a few hundred

Population living within 50 miles of the St. Lucie plant: over 1.1 million

Year in which FPL replaced the St. Lucie steam generators that hold the tubes: 2007

Year in which FPL shut down the St. Lucie reactor for routine refueling and found the tubes were banging against stainless steel anti-vibration bars, leaving dents and worn spots: 2009

Number of years FPL intended the new generators to last: 36

Year in which the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved FPL's request to run the St. Lucie reactor harder to increase its power output, a move that increased stress on the tubes: 2012

Cost of the power uprate to FPL customers under the state's controversial early nuclear cost recovery law, also known as Florida's "nuclear tax": over $1 billion

Year in which two reactors at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station in California were shut down because they suffered similar widespread tube damage, leading to a radioactive leak to the environment: 2013

Date on which FPL is scheduled to shut down the St. Lucie reactor for routine refueling: 3/3/2014

Date on which the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy called on the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to keep the St. Lucie plant from coming back online until the tubes are inspected, and on which it asked Florida lawmakers to review the state's 2006 "nuclear tax" law: 2/24/2014

Year in which Duke Energy permanently closed its Crystal River nuclear plant in Florida after a botched repair job: 2013

Year in which Duke Energy announced it would not move forward with its planned Levy County nuclear complex in Florida: 2013

Amount for which Duke Energy's customers must pay related to those two failed projects: about $3 billion

(Click on figure to go to source.)