This is an excellent short film made by surfer and activist, Kyle Thiermann. Watch and share and check out the website for Surfing for Change.
Beyond Nuclear was before the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission on February 2, 2012 calling on the federal agency to take more protective actions at the North Anna nuclear power in Mineral, VA. The call comes following the NRC approval to restart the two unit reactor site just several months after the August 23, 2011 earthquake. The two atomic reactors are sited amidst seven fault lines.
According to the Wall Street Journal (01/31/2012) , the NRC is requesting 96 nuclear power plants in central and eastern United States to make new seismic risk assessments and potentially extremely costly changes to reactor safety systems as a result of the unprecedented Virginia earthquake and the earthquake-induced Fukushima Dai-Ichi catastrophe in eastern Japan. Rather than make the costly retrofits some reactor are likely to permanently shutdown. The NRC and nuclear industry have already started the retreat from timely action and enforcement.
According to the US Geological Survey, to date there have been 100 afershocks in the North Anna area since the 5.8 magnitude quake where the epicenter was within a few miles the reactors shook much of the East Coast.
Beyond Nuclear is calling on the NRC to require North Anna's operaters, Virginia Electric Power Company (aka Dominion) to submit to the license amendment process and formal public hearings to make changes to the plant which is the first reactor in the United States to shut down operations as the result of an earthquake.
A portion of Beyond Nuclear remarks before the NRC on February 2, 2012 can be found here. The NRC webcast of the proceeding will be posted here when it becomes publicly available on their archive.
Don Argott and Sheena Joyce of 9.14 Pictures, based in Philadelphia, have debuted their anxiously awaited film, "The Atomic States of America," at the Sundance Film Festival. Featuring an interview with Beyond Nuclear's founding president Helen Caldicott, "The Atomic States of America" was inspired by and based on the book Welcome to Shirley: A Memoir from an Atomic Town by Kelly McMasters. McMasters was born and raised in Shirley, Long Island, immediately downwind and downstream from leaking experimental atomic reactors and high-level radioactive waste storage pools, which have had a devastating impact on the health of her friends and neighbors. John Anderson has written a good review in Variety, and Democracy Now! radio show host Amy Goodman interviewed Joyce and McMasters at Sundance.
As reported by a Dominion Nuclear "Notification of Unusual Event," the twin atomic reactors at North Anna nuclear power plant in Mineral, Virginia experienced a 3.2 magntiude earthquake yesterday. Dominion claims no damage was done, and both reactors remain at 100% power. The timing of the earthquake is ironic. Today, NRC announced a new model for determining seismic risks at atomic reactors in the central and eastern U.S. And on Feb. 2nd, an NRC Petition Review Board will hold a second meeting with Beyond Nuclear and environmental allies, regarding an emergency enforcement petition to shut down both North Anna atomic reactors until adequate seismic protections are put in place. A 5.8 magnitude quake, epi-centered just 11 miles from North Anna, damaged high-level radioactive waste storage casks on August 23, 2011.
The Wall Street Journal quoted Dave Lochbaum, Director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Nuclear Safety Project, on NRC's new seismic risk model:
"Critics said regulators are moving too slowly. 'The NRC does not need a new model—it needs a spine,' said Dave Lochbaum, director of nuclear safety for the Union of Concerned Scientists in Chattanooga, Tenn. The NRC already has sufficient evidence to require immediate upgrades to dozens of plants, he said, adding that further delay amounts to a 'bureaucratic stall tactic.' "