CNN's Amber Lyon has reported on "Concerns over aging nuclear plants," particularly at Entergy's Vermont Yankee reactor, a General Electric Boiling Water Reactor of the Mark I design just like Fukushima Daiichi Units 1 to 4. Despite adamant opposition by the State of Vermont to the reactor's 20 year license extension, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission rubberstamped it anyway, just days after the beginning of the Fukushima Nuclear Catastrophe. Despite its claims of openness, transparency, and accountability, NRC's Director of the Office of Public Affairs, Elliot Brenner (who previously worked as Dick Cheney's director of communications in the Vice President's Office) refused to grant CNN an interview, despite six weeks of requests. Entergy Nuclear's CEO, J. Wayne Leonard, also turned down CNN's request for an interview. Nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen of Fairewinds Associates is interviewed on Vermont Yankee's long list of accidents and incidents stemming from "sloppy maintenance," including an unprecedented cooling tower collapse.
CNN's Matt Smith has also reported on safety concerns with GE BWR Mark Is that date back over 40 years. The article reports on Beyond Nuclear's "Freeze Our Fukushimas" 10CFR2.206 emergency enforcement petition to the NRC, which 8,000 co-petitioners, including Arnie Gundersen of Fairewinds, have endorsed:
"In an October  hearing before the NRC's Petition Review Board, [Gundersen] said the vents were a 'Band-Aid fix' for the design that failed 'not once, not twice, but three times' at Fukushima Daiichi.
'True wisdom means knowing when to modify something and knowing when to stop,' said Gundersen, who leads a state commission set up to monitor the Vermont Yankee plant.
The NRC has rejected a petition by anti-nuclear groups to immediately shut down all reactors using the GE Mark I containment. But it said it would examine several of the issues the petitioners raised as part of its review of the Japanese disaster."
In Part 2 of "Nuclear Standoff" on CNN, Amber Lyons takes a closer look at the State of Vermont's showdown with Entergy Nuclear over the fate of the Vermont Yankee atomic reactor -- the resolution of which could set a precedent for aging atomic reactors nationwide, she reports.