ALBANY – The New York Division of Homeland Security and Emergency services, and the departments of Public Service, Environmental Conservation and Health, Friday, issued a letter to the Federal Energy Research Commission with the results of a recently completed, independent risk analysis addressing a part of the Algonquin natural gas pipelines located near the Indian Point nuclear power plant.
The agencies urge FERC to take additional action to minimize risks and protect public safety.
The report identified areas of potential concern that should be used to inform appropriate regulatory activities designed to further reduce the risk profile during the remaining operating life of Indian Point, the transfer of spent nuclear fuel to dry cask storage, and decommissioning activities.
The agencies called on FERC to take a series of immediate steps including not to allow any additional natural gas capacity on the Algonquin pipelines. They said given high demand in the Northeast for additional natural gas capacity, and the large diameter of the Algonquin Incremental Market pipeline near Indian Point, there is potential that pipeline owner Enbridge, Inc. may request approval to send additional gas over the pipeline at higher pressures and that could increase the risk profile of the pipelines which questions remain and Indian Point is still operating.
The state agencies said FERC should require testing of Enbridge’s ability to remotely close valves on the 42-inch, and 26-ich pipelines near Indian Point within three minutes of an event.
It also said FERC must work with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to coordinate a review of Indian Point-owner Entergy Corporation’s decommissioning plan when filing potential impacts to the original pipelines and the AIM pipeline.