By Jim Kinney
Sep. 19, 2016, 6:53 p.m Eastern Standard Time
VERNON, Vt. — The owners of the shut-down Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station are selling $20 million worth of spare parts, tools, equipment and other supplies at auction next week.
The auction is set for Sept. 28 and 29. Bids will be taken online at hgpauction.com, and in an offsite warehouse at 210 Riverside Drive in nearby Brattleboro, Vermont, said Alex Dove, director of sales for auctioneers Heritage Global Partners.
Previews are Sept. 20 and Sept. 27.
“When you have a nuclear power plant, you have to have all these spare parts and supplies on hand at all times,” Dove said by phone. When the plant closed, he added, there were a lot of leftovers, from valves to tools to electronics.
Heritage Global Partners, working on behalf of plant owner Entergy, has identified more than 1,000 lots of goods with the number of individual items running many times that, Dove said.
“We are selling everything form hand tools to specific parts of the plant,” he said.
One lot to be auctioned consists of 420 pounds of baking soda — 35 bags with 12 pounds in each.
And many items to go on the block are general hardware store tools and equipment. One lot includes a wheelbarrow, rake, shovel and sledgehammer. A number of lots include welding equipment.
“A lot of the buyers for this will be just local guys,” Dove said. “It is going to end up in a some guy’s garage.”
Other parts for sale will only be of interest to operators of power plants, both nuclear and conventional.
The sale does not include any atomic material. Dove said nothing is being sold from inside the plant, and nothing is being sold at the plant site on the Connecticut River. The in-person auction is at a nearby warehouse where Heritage has moved the items.
Federal law governs the handling of atomic material, such as spent fuel.
This is the second auction Heritage has conducted in Vermont for Entergy, but the first sale was very small.
Citing rising costs and the abundance of cheaper natural gas, Entergy shut down 620-megawatt Vermont Yankee in 2014 after 42 years of operation.
While a major part of the local economy with 650 jobs at its peak, the facility is down to just 62 employees now, said Entergy spokesman Martin Cohn.
The main activity now at Vermont Yankee is moving the spent fuel from the reactor pool into dry casks for storage on the site.