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Freeze Our Fukushimas

"Freeze Our Fukushimas" is a national campaign created by Beyond Nuclear to permanently suspend the operations of the most dangerous class of reactors operating in the United States today; the 23 General Electric Mark I Boiling Water Reactors, the same flawed design as those that melted down at Fukushima-Daiichi in Japan.

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Monday
Apr282014

"U.S. expects about 10 pct of nuclear capacity to shut by 2020"

The infamous 2007 age-related degradation cooling tower collapse at Vermont YankeeReuters reports:

"Lower natural gas prices and stagnant growth in electric demand will lead to the loss of 10,800 megawatts of U.S. nuclear generation, or around 10 percent of total capacity, by the end of the decade, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in a report issued on Monday.

About 6,000 MW of nuclear capacity will shut by 2020 in addition to six reactors totaling 4,800 MW that have already shut or plan to shut in that time period, the EIA said in its 2014 annual electric output study."

Those closures, or announced closures, include: Kewaunee, WI; Crystal River, FL; San Onofre 2 & 3, CA; and Vermont Yankee (photo, above left), a Fukushima Daiichi twin design (GE Mark I BWR). In addition, Canada's Gentilly-2 atomic reactor in Quebec was permanently closed in Dec. 2012.

Tuesday
Apr222014

"Security Issue at Fermi Probed"

NRC file photo of Fermi 2, located on the Lake Erie shore in Monroe Co., MI.The Monroe Evening News has reported that Detroit Edison's Fermi 2 atomic reactor was found to have a security breach earlier this year, which could have allowed access to the "Protected Area" (including the reactor and control room). Detroit Edison claimed the vulnerability was corrected that very day. Security-related matters are almost always cloaked in secrecy, post-9/11, so the public can not know exactly what is being described.

Beyond Nuclear is part of an environmental coalition, including Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination (CACC), Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario (CEA), Don't Waste MI, and the Sierra Club, Michigan Chapter officially intervening before NRC's Atomic Safety (sic) and Licensing Board (ASLB) against a proposed new reactor targeted at the same site, Fermi 3. The proposed new reactor's design is a GE-Hitachi, so-calleed "Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor," which has been built nowhere in the world before. Even the ESBWR design certification has experienced major problems, such as 6,000 Requests for Additional Information by NRC itself, and a legal settlement with the U.S. Justice Department over fraud and falsifications regarding the ESBWR steam dryer design.

Fermi 2 could apply to NRC for a 20-year license extension as early as this year. Fermi 2 is the largest General Electric Mark I Boiling Water Reactor in the world. It is nearly as big as Fukushima Daiichi Units 1 and 2 -- of identical design -- put together.

Friday
Apr042014

Proposed new reactor at Nine Mile Point in Upstate New York officially cancelled!

NRC file photo of Nine Mile PointNRC file photo of FitzPatrickAs documented in the Federal Register, the French Areva EPR ("Evolutionary Power Reactor") targeted at the Nine Mile Point nuclear power plant site in Upstate New York, on the Lake Ontario shore, has been officially cancelled.

The location is already heavily burdened by the presence of Nine Mile Point Units 1 & 2, as well as the FitzPatrick atomic reactor. Nine Mile Point Unit 1 and FitzPatrick are General Electric Mark I Boiling Water Reactors, identical in design to Fukushima Daiichi Units 1 to 4. Nine Mile Point Unit 2 is a Mark II, very similar in design to Fukushima Daiichi. Lake Ontario serves as the drinking water supply for many millions of people in New York, Ontario (including Canada's largest city, Toronto), and a large number of Native American/First Nations.

Tuesday
Apr012014

How close are you to a Mark I or II?

Sample image from an ESRI nuclear power plant proximity calculationThis online mapping program by ESRI can tell you your proximity to the nearest atomic reactors. Just allow the program to utilize your current location, or type in any address in the Lower 48, and find out!

This program was included in March 10, 2014 NBC News coverage of the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe's 3-year mark, in an article entitled "U.S. Nuclear Agency Hid Concerns, Hailed Safety Record as Fukushima Meltded" by investigative reporter Bill Dedman.

There are 23 GE BWR Mark Is operating in the U.S., and 3 Mark IIs. The former are identical in design to Units 1 to 4 at Fukushima Daiichi, while the latter are very similar in design. Use this program to see if an address you care about is close to one or more Mark Is or IIs, and help us "Freeze Our Fukushimas"!

Tuesday
Apr012014

Statement by The Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance regarding the PSB's decision to grant a Certificate of Public Good to Vermont Yankee

Vermont Yankee is a GE BWR Mark I, identical in design to Fukushima Daiichi Units 1-4.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Statement by The Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance regarding the PSB's decision to grant a Certificate of Public Good to Vermont Yankee

April 1, 2014

The Vermont Yankee Decommissioning Alliance has been working to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant for over 40 years.   The decision on Friday, March 28, 2014 by the Vermont Public Service Board (PSB) moves us a significant step closer to the closure of Vermont Yankee and the beginning of its decommissioning. 

 

We commend the PSB for addressing Entergy’s history of untrustworthiness.   Additionally, the PSB addressed some of our concerns regarding Entergy by over-ruling a number of Entergy’s remaining objections.  The PSB rejected Entergy’s claims for full federal preemption citing a US Supreme Court precedent and asserted dual jurisdiction over areas not involving radiological safety.

 

We appreciate that by granting the Certificate Public Good (CPG) conditioned on the Memorandum of Understanding negotiated by the state and Entergy the PSB expects Entergy to live up to the commitments signed in the settlement with the state of Vermont.  Our concerns remain the expedited transfer of the dangerous, irradiated spent fuel rods from the pool into dry cask storage; protection of the workers and the community throughout the decommissioning process; continued thermal discharge into the Connecticut River; the creation of a citizen’s advisory board and finally, the shortfall of decommissioning funds.

 

We are thankful to all the intervening parties and citizen activists who persevered through decades of struggle to close the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. We continue to be wary of Entergy Nuclear.  Though we are in new stage of endeavor, there remains a critical need for continued public vigilance for a safe, thorough and responsible decommissioning process leading to the final restoration of the site.