The Indian Point nuclear power plant in Buchanan, New York, has completed the transfer of all spent nuclear fuel to dry cask storage, marking a significant step towards the decommissioning of the plant. The move was mandated by the New York State Department of Public Service and Indian Point Closure Task Force, who wanted to reduce the potential for fires and radiation release in the event of a severe accident.
Indian Point successfully stored all 3,998 spent fuel assemblies in 127 secure concrete and steel casks within less than 30 months after the implementation of the safety requirements. This transfer away from the spent fuel pools into dry cask storage ensures safer storage conditions and mitigates the risks associated with storing spent nuclear fuel.
The state of New York has been actively advocating for the complete removal of all spent fuel from the pools, and has opposed Holtec’s Post-Defueled Emergency Plan (PDEP) waivers. Holtec International’s subsidiaries acquired the Indian Point Energy Center from Entergy Corporation in 2021.
The decision to close the Indian Point nuclear power plant was influenced by New York State’s concerns regarding the practice of densely packed cooling pools for storing spent nuclear fuel. By transferring the spent fuel to dry cask storage, the risks associated with the storage of spent fuel are reduced, making the decommissioning process safer and more efficient.