In October we reported about a new collaboration with the Nuclear Information Resource Service (NIRS) to shut down the 40-year-old Indian Point Nuclear Plant. Indian Point is located 25 miles north of New York City on the Hudson River at the intersection of two earthquake faults, the Ramapo Fault and the Stamford-to-Peekskill Fault Line. Indian Point is also sited in the most populous location of any U.S. nuclear plant, with 20 million people living or working within 50 miles of the plant. Experts say that evacuation plans are severely deficient. A catastrophic accident at Indian Point could kill tens of thousands, cause many more long-term cancers, and render NYC and much of the Hudson Valley uninhabitable.
This past fall, Rock the Earth joined with NIRS to educate concert-goers about this threat to life as we know it in the New York metro area, and gathered signatures in support of a New York City Council resolution asking that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission decline renewal of the plant’s 40-year-old operating licenses. This month, the situation got much more dire.
As if the plant’s aging reactions, location, exposure to terrorist attacks, recent explosions and subsequent shutdowns weren’t enough, this month it was reported that recent samples from nearby groundwater monitoring wells showed a dramatic increase in radioactive tritium leaking from the plant, triggering a multi-agency state probe into the plant’s continued operation. The New York Department of State Coastal Zone Management Program found that, “radioactive releases have been detected at the Indian Point facility from cracks in two different spent fuel pools. Leaks of radioactive liquids from Indian Point Unit 2 spent fuel pools have reached the Hudson River and have been detected in the groundwater beneath the Indian Point facility.”
Ongoing monitoring by the NY State Department of Health has found detectable deposits of a broad variety of radioactive isotopes both above and below the Indian Point discharge site into the fast-moving Hudson River tidal estuary. Once the contaminants enter that groundwater flow there is no system at Indian Point to remove them.
All of this makes the closure of the aging facility all the more important.
To learn more and how you can add your voice calling for the closure of Indian Point visit the project page.