As decommissioning process continues, Duane Arnold Energy Center eliminates more jobs
PALO, Iowa (KWWL) — As the decommissioning process continues at the Duane Arnold Energy Center in Palo, NextEra Energy has announced 47 more jobs will be eliminated by June 30.
The notice was filed with Iowa Workforce Development. A NextEra spokesperson says nobody is being cut from the company involuntarily and most are planned retirements or early retirement packages. The company will continue to have a phased workforce reduction over the next several years as the decommissioning process continues.
The facility, which is Iowa’s only nuclear power plant, was supposed to be decommissioned in October 2020, but damage from the derecho forced it to shut down early. The decommissioning process will take up to 60 years to complete, which is the standard amount of time for nuclear power plants to do so safely.
128 jobs were eliminated at the plant about a month after the derecho The company says their goal from the beginning of the decommissioning process has been to minimize the impact on employees.
The company unveiled plans in March to transition the site into a 3,500 acre solar farm. It’s unclear how many workers the proposed solar farm would employ.
The plant had provided power to most of eastern Iowa since 1974, and had about 450 employees form the surrounding areas. NextEra has been working with employees in helping them find new jobs in other power plants in the country, or by providing early retirement packages.