LACEY TOWNSHIP, N.J. - The nation's oldest nuclear power plant was granted a new license yesterday that will allow it to operate for 20 more years.

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued the license to the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station a week after it dismissed objections from anti-nuclear and environmental groups.

The plant's vice president, Tim Rausch, said the license extension for Oyster Creek "equals energy stability and affordability for New Jersey residents."

"The Oyster Creek team takes a great deal of pride in providing safe, reliable, low-carbon energy - produced in New Jersey, for New Jersey - and now we are assured that we can continue to do just that," Rausch said.

The opposition centered on corrosion to the plant's drywell shield, a metal enclosure that keeps superheated radioactive steam within a containment building around the reactor.