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article imageNew York's Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant denied certification

By Karen Graham     Nov 12, 2015 in Environment
The New York Department of State (DOS) has refused to give Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant the certificate required for future use of the Hudson River, citing environmental and public safety concerns.
Entergy Corporation, which owns Indian Point, contends a state certificate is not needed for the continued operation of the power plant in Buchanan, in Westchester County. The state is objecting to Entergy's request for a Coastal Consistency Determination for Indian Point.
If the objection is upheld in court, it has the potential to block Entergy's request for a 20-year extension of its operating license for the plant's unit 2 and unit 3 reactors, forcing the closure of Indian Point as soon as next year. This is what Governor Andrew M. Cuomo is hoping will happen because he says it's too dangerous to have nuclear reactors in such densely populated areas, anyway.
Hearings are set to resume in Carrytown next week into the safety concerns related to the Indian Point facility. The hearings are being held by the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board Panel, an arm of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. New York's Secretary of State Cesar Perales officially rejected Entergy's request for a Coastal Zone certificate on Nov. 6.
In the objection filed on November 6, a number of concerns were highlighted by the state, including the questionable history of operational accidents, the plant's location near two active seismic faults, the risks posed by onsite storage of spent fuel rods, and numerous other issues. Most importantly, it was emphasized that New York's state power system didn't need Indian Point, and could operate very well without its generating electricity.
Earlier this month, on November 2, Entergy Corp. announced it was closing the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Oswego County, on Lake Ontario, claiming they were losing too much money operating the 40-year-old plant, much to the chagrin of Governor Cuomo who said Entergy showed a “callous disregard” for its more than 600 employees.
Entergy Corp. closed its Vermont Yankee nuclear plant in Vernon, Vt. at the end of last year. With the closing of the FitzPatrick power plant, this leaves Entergy with only the Indian Point power plant remaining to supply nuclear power in new York.
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