Monday, August 11, 2008

AG suffers setback on Pilgrim nuclear plant

The state attorney general's office suffered a major defeat yesterday in its fight to influence relicensing proceedings for the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth.

The federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission denied a petition submitted nearly two years ago that sought greater consideration of the environmental impact of spent fuel storage facilities in the event of an accident or terrorist attack. Attorney General Martha Coakley had argued the pools where used fuel rods are stored could be drained, leading to a zirconium fire and a significant amount of radioactive material being released into the environment.

But the NRC, in a decision published yesterday in the Federal Register, said the spent-fuel pools "are massive, extremely robust structures designed to safely contain the spent fuel discharged from a nuclear reactor under a variety of normal, off-normal, and hypothetical accident conditions."

Cape Cod Times

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