The public comment period on the sale of Indian Point has been extended and the buyer has agreed to meet in Westchester.
Holtec International estimate the decommissioning of Indian Point will cost $2.3 billion. (Entergy)
CORTLANDT, NY — Requests for more opportunity to learn about and comment on Entergy’s plan to sell the Indian Point nuclear facility to Holtec International have borne fruit. The Hudson Valley’s representatives in Congress announced yesterday that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has extended the comment period to March 25, and the Westchester County Executive announced that Holtec has agreed to a public meeting in March.
Units 2 and 3 are scheduled to shut by 2022. Holtec would decommission the nuclear plant, store radioactive materials and clean up the property. Entergy and Holtec submitted a license transfer application to the NRC Nov. 21.
Holtec has estimated the cleanup of the Hudson riverfront property will cost $2.3 billion. The company has also asked the NRC to let it divert $632 million from New York’s nuclear plant decommissioning trust fund to cover the cost of managing the highly radioactive spent fuel rods.
Without the plant’s payments in lieu of property taxes, the school district, village and town budgets will take huge hits. The decommissioning work could affect their budgets as well.
It will certainly affect the environment, public services and emergency planning in Buchanan and the surrounding region, said U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, and U.S. House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey.Subscribe
“Those communities and all relevant stakeholder groups deserve to have a say in the process,” said Gillibrand. “It’s critical that each step of the decommissioning process is public and I’ll continue working with those in the Lower Hudson Valley to ensure transparency.”
In addition to their letter about extending the comment period, Schumer, Gillibrand and Loweywere joined by Representatives Eliot Engel and Sean Patrick Maloney calling on the NRC to hold a public hearing before moving forward on the Indian Point license transfer.
Meanwhile, Westchester County Executive George Latimer announced that Holtec has agreed to meet with local and county officials. Latimer wrote to the company asking for a meeting in March because, he said, the presentation made by Holtec to the Citizens Advisory Panel on Jan. 15 in Buchanan regarding the proposed transfer raised many questions.
People want to know more about Holtec, he told the press on Thursday. People want to know more about the company’s plan to deconstruct the plant.
“We wanted to create a county-wide forum to do that,” Latimer said, adding that he appreciated their swift positive response. The meeting would be at the Westchester County Center.
You may submit comments to the NRC by any of the following methods:
- Federal Rulemaking Website: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2020-0021. Address questions about NRC docket IDs in Regulations.gov to Jennifer Borges; telephone: 301-287-9127; email: Jennifer.Borges@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document.
- Email comments to: Hearing.Docket@nrc.gov. If you do not receive an automatic email reply confirming receipt, then contact us at 301-415-1677.
- Fax comments to: Secretary, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission at 301-415-1101.
- Mail comments to: Secretary, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, ATTN: Rulemakings and Adjudications Staff.
- Hand deliver comments to: 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852, between 7:30 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. (Eastern Time) Federal workdays; telephone: 301-415-1677.
By Lanning Taliaferro