The last reactor at Three Mile Island is shutting down

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Cooling towers at Three Mile Island.

Enlarge / The Three Mile Island Nuclear Plant is seen in the early morning hours March 28, 2011, in Middletown, Penn. (credit: Jeff Fusco/Getty Images)

On Wednesday, power company Exelon said that it would be closing the single reactor that it operates on Three Mile Island by September 30.

Three Mile Island (TMI) is notorious for its role as the site of the United States’ first commercial power plant accident in 1979. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission was not able to correlate the accident to any deaths or ill health effects in the Middletown, Pennsylvania, area, but the threat galvanized environmentalists against nuclear power and led to sweeping regulatory reforms in throughout the nation.

TMI-1, the 819 megawatt (MW) reactor that Exelon owns, was not affected by the 1979 accident. Exelon says it has been operating the reactor at a loss.

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