Hundreds at Statehouse for a Nuclear Free Vermont

Claire Chang lives in Gill, Mass., less than 10 miles from the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. On April 29 at the Vermont state capitol, Chang and her partner held a sign reading "No Radiation Without Representation." They were joined by hundreds of activists, and their dog. photo by Eesha Williams

(Click on the "nuclear power" tag, above, for details on the upcoming vote by the Vermont legislature. The vote will decide whether Yankee will close in 2012, or run until 2032, as owner Entergy Corp. of Louisiana wants.)


Corporate greed is alive and

Corporate greed is alive and well, comfortably residing in the multiple boardrooms of Entergy Nuclear, L.L.C, Mississippi, Entergy Global, L.L.C , Louisiana, Entergy New Orleans, Inc., Entergy Arkansas, Inc., Entergy Thermal, L.L.C. , System Energy Resources, Inc., and elsewhere, including Vernon, Vt., where they get to call themselves “Yankee.”

On April 3, one of this conglomeration’s execu tive vice presidents, Jay Thayer, wrote one of the most appalling columns I have ever read in the Brattleboro Reformer newspaper. Thayer stated that Entergy will “vigor ously challenge in court” our Vermont legislators who are requesting a substantial payment to Entergy’s decommissioning fund needed to clean up its nuclear plant’s deadly toxic waste. He argues that “there are few businesses that can take such a financial hit.”

Perhaps in Mississippi or Louisiana, rich corpo rate entities are not required to honor their envi ronmental responsibilities by cleaning up after themselves. However, we Vermonters are very proud of our clean environment. We fully expect that any business that reaps millions from operat ing here must clean up all the lethal excrement produced in the process of reaping those millions. Rather than threatening our elected officials, Thayer would do better challenging his own legis lators in his various corporate domains to provide adequate depository solutions to deal with the unthinkably dangerous spent fuel rods that Enter­gy is dumping here on the banks of a beautiful river.

A “world class nuclear power plant” are the words that Thayer uses to describe Vermont Yan kee. What an irresponsible fabrication! Nuclear plants built today must be designed to sustain a 9/11-type terrorist attack. The Vernon plant has no such protection. Further, new plants have greatly improved safety technology with vastly improved controls over cancer-inducing radioac tive emissions.

Only about 33 percent of Vermont’s electric power needs comes from Entergy’s nuclear plant, yet Vermont accumulates 100 percent of Enter gy’s hazardous spent fuel rods and 100 percent of its dangerous emissions. Common sense and empirical evidence expose Vermont Yankee as nothing less than a “world class” disaster unfold ing before our eyes.

Phyllis Mandell
Williamsville, Vermont

1st visit to VT's statehouse

I was there, and I think that was my favorite sign.

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