Pilgrim Decommissioning Group Recommends New State Panel

COURTESY PILGRIM NUCLEAR POWER STATION

PLYMOUTH – The group charged with advising state officials on the impending closure of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station met in Plymouth Thursday night to prepare their first major report and recommendations.

The 21-member Nuclear Decommissioning Citizens Advisory Panel will recommend that the Executive Branch establish an interagency working group to monitor the decommissioning process at the plant both before and after Pilgrim closes for good in mid-2019. The group would be headed up by the Executive Office of Environmental Affairs.

“It’s a huge step forward that the executive branch has shown a willingness to engage on this,” said former Cape and Islands State Senator Dan Wolf, a member of the panel.

There is no specific timetable for when the interagency board would be established.

[The Nuclear Decommissioning Citizens Advisory Panel] will still be communicating and interfacing with the interagency working group and we’re really the conduit to the public to the citizens who want to have input into that process,” Wolf said of the panel’s upcoming work.

The group will also call on the state legislature to provide appropriate funding to the Executive Branch in the upcoming fiscal year and the years following to “effectively monitor and work on the decommissioning of [Pilgrim].”

The recommendation that garnered the most discussion amongst the group was the legislature’s role in enacting legislation pertaining to the station’s impending closure.

In an 18-3 vote, the panel decided to recommend the legislature develop laws as necessary regarding the decommissioning oversight authority, radiological and environmental standards, off-site emergency preparedness, and radiological monitoring requirements.

It was the only recommendation that did not pass unanimously.

The panel will also recommend the state, the Town of Plymouth, and Entergy enter into a multi-year agreement on matters related to the decommissioning of the station.

The report will be submitted in June with a full list of recommendations compiled by the advisory group.

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