The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is no longer doing its job of protecting the public, a panel of its officials was told at a Wednesday night hearing on Indian Point in Tarrytown, according to a report by lohud.com.
Protesters at the hearing Wednesday argued that -- despite the fact the nuclear plant in Buchanan just got a passing grade for safety -- it is way past its sell-by date and should be shut down, the lohud.com report said.
On the other side of the issue were Entergy workers and Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas, who said closing the plant would mean fossil fuel plants would have to be built to supply electricity, impacting minority communities already suffering from poor air quality, the lohud.com report said.
Other politicians, such as Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who lives in Mount Kisco, have taken the position the plant should not be re-licensed based on a "long series of incidents," such as the discovery of faulty bolts at its Unit 2 and the leaking of radioactive tritium-contaminated water into the groundwater at the facility.
Critics of the Entergy facility have become increasingly more vocal about shutting it down in reaction to Spectra Energy’s natural gas project.
Spectra plans to replace its existing 26-inch pipeline with a 42-inch one, which will run across the Indian Point property.
Environmental groups, nearby residents, local activists and politicians said they are worried about what would happen at the nuclear plant if the pipeline ruptured.
One of those groups, Riverkeeper, an environmental nonprofit dedicated to protecting the Hudson River, argues the lights will not go off in New York City and elsewhere if Indian Point is closed.
The plant only makes up 12.5 percent of the available power capacity for the downstate region and the city is required by law to produce 80 percent of its power within its five boroughs, Riverkeeper officials said.
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