‘Catastrophe waiting to happen’: Sanders wants to close nuclear plant 25 mi. from NYC
The continued operation of the “decaying” 40-year-old Indian Point nuclear power plant up the Hudson River from New York City “makes no sense,” said Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders two weeks before the New York State presidential primary.
The two, 1970s-era Indian Point nuclear reactors, situated about 25 miles (40 km) north of New York City and within 50 miles of 20 million residents, have come under increased scrutiny of late as the facility has experienced nine occurrences of technical problems in the past year or so. Four of them were serious enough to shut down the plant, RT’s Alexey Yaroshevsky reported in February.
A tritium water leak in recent months sparked new concerns over the plant, which leading politicians like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and now US Senator Bernie Sanders, have said should be closed.
“I am very concerned that the Indian Power nuclear power reactor is more than ever before a catastrophe waiting to happen,” Sanders said Monday in a statement. “In my view, we cannot sit idly by and hope that the unthinkable will never happen. We must take action to shut this plant down in a safe and responsible way. It makes no sense to me to continue to operate a decaying nuclear reactor within 25 miles of New York City where nearly 10 million people live.”
Sanders is an advocate of ending US reliance on nuclear and fossil fuel power in favor of renewable sources of energy. Nuclear power supplies about 20 percent of US electrical generation, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute.