Wednesday, February 15, 2012

NRC's DEVIOUS PLOT...Force Communities To Play Host To Relic Nuclear Reactors For 150 Years

Fukishima on the Hudson (Indian Point)
Over years, I have been quite involved in various nuclear issues, primary among them being a serious thorn in the side of both the NRC and the dangerous nuclear reactors known as Indian Point 2&3 which are owned by Entergy, or should I say owned by a empty shell LLC dummy corporation who funnels all the profits up to the mother ship that is Entergy.

Occasionally, some reporter reaches out to ask my opinion on this or that involving things of a nuclear nature, and yesterday was one of those days.  Matt Wald of the New York Times reached out wanting my opinion on the NRC's most devious plot ever...forcing those communities who are hosting nuclear reactors to be saddle with these reactors for a period in excess of ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS!  Lets qualify this...what this reporter wanted to know, was how I felt/feel about the NRC's plans to change the rules in such a fashion as to allow all nuclear reactor owners to place their reactors (once shut down) into SAFESTOR for a period of 60 years before beginning decommissioning.

Safe Enclosure (or Safestor(e) SAFSTOR): This option postpones the final removal of controls for a longer period, usually in the order of 40 to 60 years. The facility is placed into a safe storage configuration until the eventual dismantling and decontamination activities occur.

Let's lay out some facts...

1.  Reactor licensees are required to have ADEQUATE FUNDS set aside to decommission reactors at the end of their licensed operating period.  
2.  Most nuclear reactor licensees DO NOT HAVE ADEQUATE FUNDS set aside for decommissioning,  despite the fact they have been reaping BILLIONS in profits from America's aging fleet of reactors.
3.  Companies like Entergy have decided they can allow the money they have set aside to GROW INTO BEING ADEQUATE if they could just push decommissioning back for an EXTRA SIXTY YEARS by putting them in SAFESTOR.
4.  Complicate all this with the reality that neither the NRC, DOE or the industry have figured out how to solve their waste stream issues, and thus are looking for a way to again push the ball down the road for say another SIXTY YEARS.  *note...what the DOD, DOE and the NRC want to do is reclassify the waste streams as POTENTIAL USE RESOURCES, thus alleviating the DOE and industry's responsibility to dispose of it...they did this we Depleted Uranium.

So, how do we communities end up being forced to play host to these aging, leaking, cancer causting reactors for some 150 years...lets do some simple math.

The Original license period for these reactors was 40 years.
The NRC is rubberstamping the license renewal applications of almost everyone of America's 104 aging reactors in the name of a Nuclear Renaissance for another 20 years.
NEI, NRC and the DOE have secretly plotted to extend these license renewals out to 40 years after all of the license renewal applications have been approved, denying we the public any say in it.

Add these up, and the reactors that we agreed to play host to for a period of 40 years have doubled their stay in our communities to 80 years.

Now, lets assume here that 40 years out from now in say 2052 these ancient relics are finally cooled down and shut off.  If the NRC grants the nuclear industry what they want, instead of forcing them to abide by the contractual obligations made with our communities, every reactor licensee will be allowed to put their reactors into SAFESTOR for an additional sixty years.  So a 40 year agreement is now pushed to a 140 year agreement, host communities FORCED to play host even though the original contracts call for immediate decommissioning once a reactor is shut down.  Curious here what the odds are of Entergy even being around in 2112? (can we say ENRON?)

So, finally in the year 2112 (supposedly) the decommissioning will begin, and in a best case scenario will continue on for AT LEAST TEN YEARS.  Do the math, and there is your 150 year total.  

Do not believe the NRC can effectively argue the fairness of taking say the 300 acre Indian Point site in Buchanan, and turning it into an economic DEAD ZONE for some 70 years AFTER INDIAN POINT SHUTS DOWN.

Write the NRC, express your outrage at this devious plan to allow reactor owners to put shut down reactors into SAFESTOR for a period of sixty years....curious here NRC COMMISSIONERS...IP 1 has been in SAFESTOR since 1978...are you going to allow ConED and Entergy to push off the decommissioning of this reactor until they get around too decommissioning IP 2&3...that would create a legal precedent saying it is SAFE to put a reactor into SAFESTOR for at least 134 that your super duper dastardly plan?  Will that 60 year SAFESTOR be doubled yet again, just as you seem to double EVERYTHING ELSE?

Should communities be forced to play host to a shut down reactor for an extra SIXTIES YEARS in the name of letting the company SAVE MONEY (earn more profits).  Should the NRC basically waive the contractual obligations made to communities in the name of CORPORATE PROFITS?