Rudy Giuliani is about to become the face of Indian Point, a Westchester County, NY nuclear power plant. Starting next week, the former NYC Mayor will be showcased in a series of ads designed to promote Indian Point's safety.
Entergy, the company that currently owns the Indian Point power plant, has once again hired Giuliani; previously Mayor Giuliani has served as a consultant and adviser. This time Giuliani will be showcased in a new campaign which will be featured in newspaper and television ads, with Giuliani vouching Indian Point is safe.
According to the New York Times, Entergy spokesman, James F. Steets, did not share how much Giuliani was being paid or how much the campaign will cost.
NYT reported, Steets said, “Our goal is to reassure people about the safety of Indian Point,” adding, “With the high regard people have for Mayor Giuliani, I think we can get that message across clearly.”
Giuliani's consulting firm reportedly had no comment.
This campaign comes at a volatile time for Entergy as the company seeks to renew licenses for its two reactors; the third reactor, Unit 1 is no longer operational. Entergy bought the reactors back in 2000 and 2001. Originally Consolidated Edison (ConEd) owned Units 1 and 2 while the New York Power Authority owned Unit 3. Initially Entergy bought Unit 3, however by 2001 Entergy had purchased all three reactors.
Entergy also owns a plant in Vermont that is currently going through the legal system in regards to renewing its licensing in that state. Entergy purchased the Vermont Yankee facility in 2002, Digital Journal had reported this past July.
However there is a lot of opposition in the region in regards to the licensing renewals. New York's Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been calling for the plant to be shut down.
The plant sits right alongside the Hudson River and is located just north of New York City in northern Westchester County. Indian Point is an aging facility, having been initiated in the 1950s and coming to fruition in the early 1960s. The viability of this plant is an ongoing controversial issue for those in the vicinity of the nuclear power plant, and over the years there have been many calls for Indian Point to be closed.
Reasons often cited are safety issues, the age of the facility, its proximity to NYC, the fact the plant sits on an earthquake fault, and a lack of feasible evacuation plan in the event a disaster were to occur.
Many of the roads leading out of the area are narrow rural roads and cannot support the level of traffic which would result in the aftermath of a nuclear accident. Back in 2003 the four surrounding counties of the nuclear plant rejected the evacuation plan.
This high profile campaign ironically enough comes at a time where Giuliani is considering a presidential bid for 2012, as reported by Digital Journal.