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Nuclear Watch Dog Opposes Report Clearing Nine Mile 1 Nuclear Reactor

  One Nuclear Watchdog group is not convinced of the safety of the Nine Mile Point 1 Nuclear plant in Scriba despite a bill of good health from federal regulators.  

The N-R-C issued a reportthis week clearing Constellation Energy over several recent emergency shutdowns.  Nuclear Information and Resource Service Director Tim Judson worries the review process might not be safe enough.

“What happened was Nine Mile 1 had a series of emergency shutdowns for various reasons for a very short period of time.  The problem with the way that the NRC responds to these things is that they deal with the problem after it happens.” 

The problems included failures of a pressure regulator and voltage regulator;  collapse of a lightning arrestor and feed-water control malfunction.  But the N-R-C was satisfied with Constellation Energy’s repairs and procedure changes.  Judson wonders of some of the automatic shutdowns and failures are related to the age of the plant that went online in 1969.

“Every nuclear power plant that started up before Nine Mile 1 has already been shut down and several that were younger than Nine Mile 1 have been shut down.  So there are clearly aging issues with the plant.  Equipment is breaking more often.” 

Judson adds even as these problems were being investigated, there were other incidents.  The N-R-C cited a brief cooling system failure during refueling last year.  The plant’s license was renewed in 2006 through 2029.

Chris Bolt, Ed.D. has proudly been covering the Central New York community and mentoring students for more than 30 years. His career in public media started as a student volunteer, then as a reporter/producer. He has been the news director for WAER since 1995. Dedicated to keeping local news coverage alive, Chris also has a passion for education, having trained, mentored and provided a platform for growth to more than a thousand students. Career highlights include having work appear on NPR, CBS, ABC and other news networks, winning numerous local and state journalism awards.