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Nuke Fight Nears Decisive Moment

Under pressure from the public, the Vermont Legislature can close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant.

Comments (24)
Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Vermont Legislature will make history in a vote expected as early as January on whether to allow the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant to continue operating after 2012. Never before has a state taken such a vote. "This is a tremendous opportunity for us," said Deb Katz of the Citizens Awareness Network, an antinuclear group based in Shelburne Falls. "But it's not going to be easy."

Vermont Yankee is three miles from Massachusetts and a stone's throw from New Hampshire. A serious accident or act of sabotage at the reactor would kill thousands, and leave hundreds of square miles uninhabitable. Like all nuclear power plants, Vermont Yankee contributes to global warming. The cost of storing nuclear waste makes nuclear power more expensive than solar, wind, or any other source of electricity. So people from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont are working with Katz's group and other organizations, telephoning and going door to door in legislative districts throughout Vermont, encouraging voters to contact their state legislators.

On August 17, a group dubbed the Solar Rollers, which included several Western Massachusetts residents, set off from Vermont Yankee on a two-week bicycle ride through Vermont to Burlington and the Canadian border, distributing information on the upcoming vote.

"If the Vermont legislature votes to close Vermont Yankee, it will have tremendous significance nationally," said Cindy Folkers of Beyond Nuclear, an advocacy group near Washington, D.C. "It will set a precedent."

Two years ago the Vermont Legislature passed, and the governor signed, Act 160, which gave the Legislature the authority to decide whether Vermont Yankee can operate after 2012. Because of the way the law was written, the governor will not be able to veto the Legislature's decision. The outcome of November's legislative elections in Vermont will likely affect the outcome of the nuclear vote.

Vermont Yankee is owned by the multi-billion-dollar Entergy Corporation of Louisiana, which has already begun pouring money into lobbying in anticipation of the vote. Entergy is running a blitz of full-page ads in Vermont newspapers, and seemingly incessant radio commercials.

But in recent years, some public hearings in and around Brattleboro on the reactor's future have drawn as many as 500 people, the vast majority of whom were in favor of closing the plant. Dozens of people have been arrested for civil disobedience at the plant's gates in Vernon, and at Entergy's corporate offices in Brattleboro.

Volunteers with the Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG), the state's biggest environmental organization, have spent the summer knocking on doors and speaking with people about why Vermont Yankee should be closed. "We've been finding tremendous support for closing Vermont Yankee," said VPIRG director Paul Burns. "This will be one of the dominant issues in the next legislative session. Because of the way the prevailing winds blow, New Hampshire would probably be most affected by an accident. So we're getting support from people in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, too."

Burns predicted that Entergy would outspend the antinuclear groups "1,000 to one" in lobbying and advertising around the upcoming vote. "But our odds are better than theirs," he said. "If there's any state where the public will can prevail in a fight like this, it's Vermont."

Vermont Yankee opened in 1972 and was sold to Entergy by a group of New England utilities in 2002. The new owner promptly sought and eventually won regulators' approval to ramp up power production to 20 percent more than the plant had ever before produced. There have been a string of accidents at Yankee, including a fire in 2005, and last year's spectacular cooling tower collapse, which sent debris and hundreds of thousands of gallons of water cascading several stories to the ground. But so far Entergy has been able to dismiss these problems as minor, since no one has been killed.

 

To understand why so many people are volunteering so much time to try to close Vermont Yankee, one must look at the history of the nuclear power industry.

There are now 104 nuclear power reactors operating at 65 locations in the United States. The nuclear power industry was created by the federal government in the mid-1950s, according to Nuclear Politics in America by Colorado State University professor Robert Duffy. The technology required to use nuclear power to generate electricity was invented by the same government scientists who invented the first nuclear bombs, which were used with devastating effect in World War II.

In 1949, the Soviet Union became the first country besides the U.S. to detonate a nuclear bomb. Soon after that, Congressman Chet Holifield said, "We cannot be indifferent to the enormous psychological advantage that the Soviets would gain if they demonstrated to a tense and divided world the ability to put the atom to work in peacetime civilian pursuits&. The United States will not take second place in the contest."

At the time, there were no American companies interested in building nuclear power plants. Power companies considered coal-fired plants to be a better investment. And experts were predicting minimal increases in demand for electricity in the U.S.

The Atomic Energy Act of 1954 effectively created the nuclear power industry. The government provided the industry with millions of dollars of free research, heavily subsidized fuel, discounted waste disposal, tax breaks, and, perhaps most significant, taxpayer-subsidized insurance in case of an accident, since private companies were unwilling to provide coverage for radiation damage. The insurance was provided by the Price Anderson Act of 1957. Congress has renewed the Act approximately once every 10 years and it's still in effect.

The importance to the industry of this taxpayer-subsidized insurance is illustrated by a 1982 study done for Congress by the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The study estimated that a serious accident at the Indian Point nuclear power plant near New York City would kill 50,000 people, result in 100,000 "radiation injuries," and cause $300 billion in property damage.

Following the partial meltdown of the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania in 1979, about 144,000 people who lived near the plant evacuated the area for several days. The number of people who died prematurely because of the Three Mile Island accident is disputed by experts. Estimates range from zero to thousands. Settlements paid by the reactor's owner to people who lived near the reactor required people who got the money to remain silent about the accident.

In 1987, James Asselstine, then a member of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission appointed by President Ronald Reagan, told the New York Times that there was a 45 percent chance of a meltdown at a nuclear reactor somewhere in the United States by 2007. The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the Soviet Union in 1986 has killed or will kill (from cancer) an estimated 9,000 people, according to a 2005 United Nations report.

A threat by the U.S. government to get into the business of electricity generation prompted private corporations to build nuclear power plants. In 1957 Lewis Strauss, the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, said, "It is the Commission's policy to give the industry the opportunity to undertake the construction of power reactors. However, if industry does not, within a reasonable period of time, undertake to build the type of reactors which are considered promising, the Commission will take steps to build the reactors at its own initiative."

The federal government had spent $1.2 billion developing nuclear reactor technology by 1962, more than double the amount the industry spent. In the mid-1960s, less than 1 percent of the electricity used in the U.S. came from nuclear power. In 2000, nuclear power reached its peak, providing 20 percent of U.S. electricity. As of 2005, that had declined to 19 percent.

In the mid-1980s, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (successor to the Atomic Energy Commission), whose members were appointed by President Reagan, changed its rules to allow new nuclear power plants to open even when state and local officials said there would be no way for people near the plants to evacuate in case of an emergency. Then-governor Mario Cuomo of New York called the change "absurd."

Earlier, President Jimmy Carter's Department of Energy had agreed in 1977 to eventually take all the industry's "high-level" nuclear waste. It wasn't until 1987 that Congress decided where the federal government would dump the nuclear waste that Carter had offered to take: Yucca Mountain in Nevada.

The nuclear waste dump at Yucca Mountain still has not opened. The state of Nevada is doing its utmost to make sure it never does. The U.S. Department of Energy estimated in 2001 that the total cost of the dump would be about $58 billion. The waste is still being stored around the nation near the reactors where it was created— for example, in Rowe, Mass.

In 1995, the National Academy of Sciences issued a report that said nuclear waste kept at Yucca Mountain could still be deadly in 1 million years. During that time, the waste will need to be watched 24 hours a day by heavily armed guards.

Spending one dollar on energy efficiency programs like Efficiency Vermont saves approximately three times as much energy as spending one dollar on nuclear power generates, according to a study by Amory Lovins, published in 2005 by the journal Nuclear Engineering International. The dollar spent on energy efficiency also creates more jobs than the dollar spent on nuclear, according to David Goldstein of the Natural Resources Defense Council.

In other words, the study suggests, if New Englanders took the money we now give to Entergy for electricity from Vermont Yankee and instead spent it on programs like Efficiency Vermont, Vermont Yankee could be closed, our electricity bills would go down, and there would be a net increase in jobs. Most of the electricity Vermont Yankee generates is used outside Vermont.

Wind power and energy efficiency programs are at least twice as cost effective as nuclear power at reducing the pollution that causes global warming, according to the Lovins study. Fossil fuel is used in the construction and dismantling of nuclear power plants; mining, processing and transporting nuclear fuel; and transporting, guarding and storing nuclear waste. The massive steel and concrete casks that hold Vermont Yankee's waste will need to be replaced approximately once every 100 years for the next 1 million years. The old radioactive casks will then need to be disposed of.

Between 1974 and 2005, the U.S. government spent on research and development (in 2005 dollars) $48 billion for nuclear power; $20 billion for fossil fuels; $12 billion for solar, wind and other sources of renewable energy; and $12 billion on energy efficiency, according to "Government Energy Technology R&D Budgets," a report by the International Energy Agency.

But the government's energy investment strategy has arguably not reflected the will of the American people, hundreds of thousands of whom have taken to the streets to express their aversion to nuclear power over the years. On May 2, 1977 police arrested 1,414 protesters at the Seabrook nuclear power plant in New Hampshire. In June, 1978 some 12,000 people attended a protest at Seabrook. In August, 1978 almost 500 people were arrested for protesting at the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in California. In May, 1979 in Washington, D.C., about 70,000 people, including the governor of California, attended a march and rally against nuclear power. On June 2, 1979 about 500 people were arrested for protesting construction of the Black Fox nuclear power plant in Oklahoma. The next day, 15,000 people attended a rally at the Shoreham nuclear power plant on Long Island; about 600 were arrested. On June 30, 1979 about 38,000 people attended a protest rally at Diablo Canyon. On August 23, 1979 in New York City about 200,000 people attended a rally against nuclear power. On September 23, 1979 about 167 protesters were arrested at Vermont Yankee. On June 22, 1980 about 15,000 people attended a protest near the San Onofre nuclear power plant in California.

No new nuclear power plants have been ordered in the U.S. since 1978.

Protests preceded the shutdown of the Shoreham, Yankee Atomic, Millstone I, Rancho Seco, Maine Yankee, and at least a dozen other nuclear power plants. An article in the June 2007 issue of the Journal of American History did not hesitate to give protesters credit for the decline of the nuclear power industry: "The protesters lost their battle [when Diablo Canyon opened in 1984], but in a sense they won the larger war, for nuclear plant construction ended across the country in 1986."

Bob Mulholland ran the successful campaign to close the Rancho Seco nuclear power plant near Sacramento, Calif. Rancho Seco was closed in 1989 because the people of Sacramento voted to close it. In a recent interview, Mulholland, who now works for the California Democratic Party, told the Advocate that the nuclear industry dramatically outspent the antinuclear groups in advertising before the referendum vote.

"David can beat Goliath," he said. "We had a New England town meeting-style community debate and people saw that the industry was lying. Closing Rancho Seco was the best thing our community ever did."

 

Comments (24)
Post a Comment
The photo is of Vermont Yankee.
Posted by Eesha Williams on 8.27.08 at 13:11
Exactly HOW does Vermont Yankee contribute to global warming? The gasoline burned by it's employees going to work?
Posted by Regis Weber on 8.27.08 at 17:27
Well, let's see the mining, milling, enrichment of uranium for fuel rods might use some fossil fuels and CFC's. Then the transportation of the new fuel rods, the use of dry casks for the temporary storage of high level radioactive waste which are made of concrete and steel, again with fossil fuels. CO2 isn't the only greenhouse gas. CFC's are much more potent. And the decommissioning of the reactor which must happen at some point, involves a huge amount of fossil fuels. Somehow nobody wants to think about the complete fuel cycle and then there is what to do with the waste? Dry casks must be replaced every 100 yrs. who is going to do that? and use what energy to make the new casks? At Vermont Yankee, 6 dry casks sit 1.5 ft above the 500 yr flood plain, which has been breached in parts of the country at least twice in the last 5 yrs. Flood waters are not as clean as the water used to test the casks integrity. plenty of global warming contributions from Entergy. somehow if there were an accident at a solar panel or wind turbine we won't need an evacuation plan, but we do need a fully funded decommissioning fund. in 2001, Germany started to install 3300MW of solar PV over the course of 4 yrs. Vermont gets 20% more SUN than Germany. Vermont only needs 250MW to replace Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee. We CAN REPLACE Entergy Vermont Yankee
Posted by claire on 8.27.08 at 17:47
Vermont Yankee is also not the only nuclear plant in New England owned and run by Entergy and I wonder if the effect of this battle might be even stronger if the group that is fighting against the Pilgrim Station in Plymouth (Mass's only plant and Entergy's other plant in the region that expires in 2012) connected with those working in Vermont. Does anyone know if such attempts have been tried?
Posted by Kristin on 8.28.08 at 3:42
This article mixes misinformation with truth and tries to make people make decisions by fear instead of fact. Being ruled by fear is dangerous. So many "What if" scenarios and predictions of death and devestation. For example: How many deaths were caused by Chernobyl? The article fails to mention that the EXACT count by the UN report is 54. Further, no one died from Three Mile Island - not even a single employee of the 700 or so that were working at the power station. Now, how many people's lives are cut short each year in the US alone from fossil fuel use? A Harvard Medical School study estimates that it is between 15,000 and 25,000. Check it for yourself. How much of the non-GHG emission power is produced by nuclear in the United States? Over 70 percent! Nothing else comes close. If nuclear power is so dangerous and deadly, then why aren't the actual workers at nuclear power stations dropping like over-ripe grapefruits? Another Harvard Medical School study shows that nuclear workers are at no higher risk from cancer than people who can't even say "nuclear". Check it for yourself. No taxpayer has ever paid for any liability insurance for nuclear power. That's just plain wrong. The facts are that nuclear really is clean, safe, reliable, and inexpensive.
Posted by Michael Stuart on 8.28.08 at 5:46
If nuclear power is safe and clean and inexpensive, why is it that no new plants have been orderd in the last 20 years? Don't believe me - how about helen Caldicott By Dr. Helen Caldicott, 9/3/2001 Among the many departures from the truth by opponents of the Kyoto protocol, one of the most invidious is that nuclear power is clean and, therefore, the answer to global warming. We heard this during the last round of talks in Bonn, and we can expect to hear more of the same as we move closer to the next round of Kyoto talks that are coming up in Marrakesh in October and November. However, the cleanliness of nuclear power is nonsense. Not only does it contaminate the planet with long-lived radioactive waste, it significantly contributes to global warming. While it is claimed that there is little or no fossil fuel used in producing nuclear power, the reality is that enormous quantities of fossil fuel are used to mine, mill and enrich the uranium needed to fuel a nuclear power plant, as well as to construct the enormous concrete reactor itself. Indeed, a nuclear power plant must operate for 18 years before producing one net calorie of energy. (During the 1970s the United States deployed seven 1,000-megawatt coal-fired plants to enrich its uranium, and it is still using coal to enrich much of the worlds uranium.) So, to recoup the equivalent of the amount of fossil fuel used in preparation and construction before the first switch is thrown to initiate nuclear fission, the plant must operate for almost two decades. But that is not the end of fossil fuel use because disassembling nuclear plants at the end of their 30- to 40-year operating life will require yet more vast quantities of energy. Taking apart, piece by radioactive piece, a nuclear reactor and its surrounding infrastructure is a massive operation: Imagine, for example, the amount of petrol, diesel, and electricity that would be used if the Sydney Opera House were to be dismantled. Thats the scale were talking about. And that is not the end of fossil use because much will also be required for the final transport and longterm storage of nuclear waste generated by every reactor. From a medical perspective, nuclear waste threatens global health. The toxicity of many elements in this radioactive mess is long-lived. Strontium 90, for example, is tasteless, odorless, and invisible and remains radioactive for 600 years. Concentrating in the food chain, it emulates the mineral calcium. Contaminated milk enters the body, where strontium 90 concentrates in bones and lactating breasts later to cause bone cancer, leukemia, and breast cancer. Babies and children are 10 to 20 times more susceptible to the carcinogenic effects of radiation than adults. Plutonium, the most significant element in nuclear waste, is so carcinogenic that hypothetically half a kilo evenly distributed could cause cancer in everyone on Earth. Lasting for half a million years, it enters the body through the lungs where it is known to cause cancer. It mimics iron in the body, migrating to bones, where it can induce bone cancer or leukemia, and to the liver, where it can cause primary liver cancer. It crosses the placenta into the embryo and, like the drug thalidomide, causes gross birth deformities. Finally, plutonium has a predilection for the testicles, where it induces genetic mutations in the sperm of humans and other animals that are passed on from generation to generation. Significantly, five kilos of plutonium is fuel for a nuclear weapon. Thus far, nuclear power has generated about 1,139 tons of plutonium. So, nuclear power adds to global warming, increases the burden of radioactive materials in the ecosphere and threatens to contribute to nuclear proliferation. No doubt the Australian government is keen to assist the uranium industry, but the immorality of its position is unforgivable. NOTE: Dr. Helen Caldicott is founding president of Physicians for Social Responsibility.
Posted by Daniel Hoviss on 8.28.08 at 7:15
Please check your facts before posting that "no new plants have been ordered in the last 20 years." http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5iVJ5nMmrLZ3qTonyM0o6mJsHzZQgD92QV4OG0 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AP1000 - check the "construction plans" section for USA. Georgia Power officially ordered two new reactors in April. Many others are soon to follow. http://www.thecitizen.com/~citizen0/node/30739 Arguments that nuclear power adds to global warming (compared to the only viable alternatives to produce that much energy at this time) do not hold water. The air and environment would be much, much worse if all the current nuke plants in the world were replaced by fossil fuel plants (not to mention how much higher the fossil prices would then be.) Certainly wind and solar should be developed vigorously, but people who think they can replace base-load electrical generation for industrial nations anytime soon are deluded. Folks are not willing to give up all their electronic gadgets and conveniences, yet they say "No fossil fuels, No nukes." Well sorry people, this is the real world and you can't have it both ways.
Posted by Glenn on 8.28.08 at 8:28
This is quite a diatribe against nuclear energy, much of it misguided and incorrect. If we don't stop using fossil fuels to generate electricity ASAP, Vermont is going to be a very warm place someday. Solar and wind aren't reliable now and won't be for many, many years. So if we don't use nuclear and we can't use natural gas, coal or oil to make electricity, shall we freeze in the dark? The solution is simply to make sure nuclear is safe. People who made up their minds about nuclear power in the 1970s are unable to hear the experts on this technology on the subject of safety. Sticking one's head in the sand won't solve our energy problems.
Posted by Pat on 8.28.08 at 11:49
<< Exactly HOW does Vermont Yankee contribute to global warming? >> Posted by Regis Weber on 8.27.08 at 17.27 Regis -- check the photograph accompanying the article. Looks like a global warming contribution to me!
Posted by C. T. Watcher on 8.28.08 at 13:57
Is the Michael Stuart who posted a comment above the same one who works for Dominion Nuclear Corporation, owner of Kewaunee nuke in Carlton, WI, Millstone nuke in Waterford, CT, North Anna Power nuke in Louisa County, VA and Surry nuke in Surry County, VA.? Glenn, who also posted a comment, did not give his last name. He did give three links. The only one of the three that works is to a Wikipedia article. As the NY Times has reported, Wikipedia has been a tool of major corporations' PR departments -- especially the nuke industry.
Posted by Eesha Williams on 8.29.08 at 12:33
Does anyone know how many people Vermont Yankee employs ???
Posted by Matthew Foster on 8.31.08 at 16:30
VY Employs around 600 during normal operations, and at least double that every 18 months when it gets refueled. As for the picture above, that is the main transformer that is on fire. Please note that is not normal, and is not a nuclear only incidence. Even a wind plant could have that happen, as they have transformers as well (as does any other power distribution plant) In regards to the casks that someone mentioned, there are 5, not 6, and they weigh 40 tons each (almost all of it is steel and concrete, there is actually very little spent fuel in each). This article is so full of anti nuclear crap and misinformation, it is no wonder that the average citizen doesn't know anything about nuclear power except what the so-called "enviromental awareness groups" tell them. Even the tone of this article is such that if someone knocks on your door and says "nuclear bad..." but has no real experience or understanding, that is OK, but if the big evil company puts out information backed by fact, they they are "trying to buy you" or "lobbying for thier own interests". No doubt, Entergy is trying to make money, but in the long run they know that honesty in investment in the community and the plants will keep them operating and making money. Yes, there have been issues, such as the cooling tower at VY. The reason those are not "safety" and are "minor" is that the plant does not need them to operate. They were installed to meet environmental regulations regarding maximum river temperature rise caused by the plant. Anytime something happens at any plant it gets full attention by the activist groups. You don't get that kind of awareness with anyother industy. Another problem with activist groups that have an agenda, rather than trying to find a solution to the common problem, is that when plants, such as VY, openly tell you about issues they are working through, or have had, the activists crucify them, and shout "what else is happening that you are not telling us about". Well, the answer is nothing. Many times, the plants are not required to report certain issues to the public, but they do anyway to try to build respect and a reputation of honesty, which is quite often thrown back in thier faces. Remember, the people that operate these plants live in and around the communites they serve. They are the ones running them and maintaining them. Honest people, neighbors, and friends. These people give to the community, donate time, money, and tools. The company gives matching gifts, assists schools, fire support, etc. The people that work at the plant pay taxes, spend money, and the plant itself pays taxes. There are issues with nuclear power, no doubt, but there are solutions as well. Most of the realistic solutions are held up in court battles by activist groups who make claims that are not true, just to force an investigation, causing delays, and costing money. The what if scenarios are really just scare tactics. Three Mile island was bad. Chernobyl was worse. All US reactors have primary and secondary containment. Chernobyl had no containment. Our plants are built with very specific QA proceedures, Chernobyl was not. Our melt down taught us a lot about nuclear safety. After that accident, the NRC required upgrades to all the plants so that could never happen again, including more sensors, extra equipment, more automatic systems, interlocks, increases in conservative numbers, and new guidlines for operation. With the culture of nuclear safety in place, new reactors are being designed to be even better. The point is that three mile island was bad, but despite how bad it was, the equipment and safety we had in place then prevented a disaster. Since then we have significantly increased safety in the industy, and because of our designs, we will never have a Chernobyl. You could make what if arguments about anything all day. What if a meteor strikes the planet and plunges us into an ice age? What are we doing about that? What if a supervolcano erupts? What if the east coast is hit by a massive tidal wave? It could happen. The real answer is to intelligently assess the risk vs the benefit and compare it to the alternatives. In this case, Wind, Solar, Hydro, Fossil, Geothermal, Tidal, and Biomass. I would like to see more advanced reactors in the US, augmented with a hydrogen, hybrid (NG/Hydrogen), or electric transport system (car, rail, etc), and drilling for our own resources, rather than buying it. If we are concerned about the environment (which I am) then we need smart regulations to protect it, not fanatic regulations designed to kill it.
Posted by Adam on 9.1.08 at 4:15
The reason my first two links posted above don't work is that somehow the software on this site combined them into one long link that isn't valid. If you hover your mouse over them you will see that at the bottom of your browser. You can figure out the links that way and copy/paste if you want to see them. But all they were trying to do was point out that new nuclear plants have in fact been ordered in this country this year. So the "no new plants ordered in the past 20 years" is flat wrong. You will be reading about several new plant orders in coming months. These are plants that will come online within the next 6 years or so, with 60-year design lives. Most of these are in the US southeast at this point. The utilities in these areas that need lots more electrical power know that large new power plants are required. It would be environmentally and economically irresponsible to build fossil plants to fill this need. Nuclear is the only viable alternative in the short term. They are opting for the next generation plant designs (NRC reviewed and approved) with passive safety features. Wind and solar are great, but they can't meet the needs. Are you willing to put up with rolling blackouts? I don't think so.
Posted by Glenn on 9.4.08 at 21:03
This is quite a diatribe against nuclear energy, much of it misguided and incorrect. If we don't stop using fossil fuels to generate electricity ASAP, Vermont is going to be a very warm place someday. Solar and wind aren't reliable now and won't be for many, many years. So if we don't use nuclear and we can't use natural gas, coal or oil to make electricity, shall we freeze in the dark? The solution is simply to make sure nuclear is safe. People who made up their minds about nuclear power in the 1970s are unable to hear the experts on this technology on the subject of safety. Sticking one's head in the sand won't solve our energy problems.
Posted by forum on 1.23.09 at 9:55
thank you!
Posted by technology on 3.6.09 at 22:59
thanks
Posted by mirc on 5.13.09 at 15:11
klthank u
Posted by AVI to DVD on 5.21.09 at 20:58
Seriously, I understand how these reactors work, and I'd live downwind, with my family. Probably most of the plant staff does too. They're quite safe. They're the only carbon-free energy source that works all the time. I wish Massachusetts would grow some balls, shut down the Valley's coal pollution factory, and put a nice ESBWR where it was, doing something about global warming and sustainability in a real way. You might find some aging boomers show up to protest; they grew up during the nuclear testing era. But they aren't long for the world, and there's little activism amongst youth against nuclear power - you'd find the nation's young people willing to protest a coal plant, but not a reactor.
Posted by Dave on 5.22.09 at 0:03
feel so good.
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Posted by sohbet on 6.10.09 at 6:11
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Posted by nomar on 6.26.09 at 14:27

Lets be reasonable peoples, all of you have two main points, yay or nay, what is it? You want radiation tuna for dinner in twenty years from the Japnanese dumping millions of tons of polluted nuclear waste water well above the gov't standards, by 2,000,000, or "lets just let it go as a bad mistake" and not fine them?!. Lets see any of the poeple who lived downwind of that farm would be supporting corporate democracies new fuedal system of power excuses. Solar, water, geo, and yes wind, have small manufacturing energy usages to make them, but poeple get work, and it doesn't hurt our Food! You people are seriously dillusional who actually want to wake up pop a iodine pill and call it a day. Screw you, you aint American. Our National security is the protection of the people in all forms foriegn or domestic. As far as I can see a cesspool bubbling in my backyard fifty years from now qualifie as a threat to the peoples land and thier health and well being. Who are we sacraficing this ideology for.? Notice how right now if you go online and look up anti-nuclear protest groups posted by Wikipdeia it comes up as a different page? Get real!

Posted by Kris Prater on 4.5.11 at 12:53

thank you >

Posted by soft77 on 4.8.11 at 10:22
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