COVERT, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – Despite Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s pleas in September to Washington for grant funding for Holtec International to restart a nuclear power plant in southwest Michigan, the federal government instead opted to turn down the request for financial assistance.

The U.S. Energy Department, run by former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, notified Holtec International on Friday.

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The Palisades plant along Lake Michigan was shut down last spring after generating electricity for more than 50 years.

With Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s support, Holtec, a company that specializes in decommissioning nuclear plants, applied for federal aid to keep it going.

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At the time, Gov. Whitmer wrote in a press release, “Keeping Palisades open will keep energy costs low, shore up domestic energy production, and increase Michigan’s competitiveness for future economic development.” In addition, she cited Michigan’s need for “reliable energy production.”

Palisades critics, including a coalition of environmental groups, said they are pleased with the government’s decision.

Michigan News Source reached out to Gov. Whitmer’s office to see what next steps her office would take. They did not comment by press time.