Panel Discussion Planned Ahead of NRC Pilgrim Meeting

COURTESY PILGRIM NUCLEAR POWER STATION

PLYMOUTH – The day before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission presents preliminary findings from the latest Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station inspection, a panel of experts will discuss nuclear safety and regulations.

The program aims to inform and educate residents to prepare them for Tuesday’s NRC meeting and will discuss the recent ‘leaked’ NRC email expressing safety concerns at the plant and the implications of ongoing safety violations.

The discussion, which will be led by Union of Concerned Scientist and Director of the Nuclear Safety Project Dave Lochbaum, is tonight from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Plymouth Senior Center.

Other panelists are Deb Katz from Citizens Awareness Network and Mary Lampert from Pilgrim Watch.

The panel discussion will be moderated by Heather Lightner from Concerned Neighbors of Pilgrim and Diane Turco with the Cape Downwinders.

The NRC will present preliminary conclusions and answer questions from the public Tuesday night at Hotel 1620 at Plymouth Harbor from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

A comprehensive three-week inspection of the plant wrapped up earlier this month after the plant was placed under increased NRC oversight in 2015 for a number of safety violations and unplanned shutdowns.

NRC officials made the decision after receiving a letter that was signed by Governor Charlie Baker, Attorney General Maura Healey and the Cape and Islands legislative delegation.

The letter on January 4 pointed to a leaked email last month from the head of the inspection team that raised questions about Entergy’s ability to operate the plant safely.

It asked that a meeting be held to answer the public’s questions about the safety of the plant.

The meeting will be led by Brett Klukan, the regional counsel for NRC Region I.

Findings about what path NRC oversight will take will not be addressed as a complete report of the inspection’s findings has not been completed.

The NRC will brief the plant’s owner, Entergy, on the findings and then have 45 days to complete the formal report.

Entergy was forced to shut down the plant last month after leaks were found in several steam valves.

The plant is expected to close by the end of May 2019.

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