Editorial: Entergy's Lies

Entergy officials say they decided to close Vermont Yankee because of the low price of natural gas. If that's true, why is the company continuing to run its five other nuclear power plants, including Pilgrim near Boston and Indian Point in New York? The real reason Vermont Yankee is closing is because of the thousands of ordinary people who saw through Entergy's lies ("nuclear power is safe, clean, reliable -- it doesn't cause climate change") and volunteered countless hours to attend marches and rallies, to get arrested for non-violent civil disobedience, to speak out at public hearings, and to go door-to-door to tell their neighbors the truth.

Protests preceded the permanent shutdown of Shoreham, Yankee Atomic, Millstone I, Rancho Seco, Maine Yankee and more than a dozen other nuclear power plants in the U.S. When he was president, Richard Nixon said the nation’s goal was to have 1,000 nuclear power plants by the year 2000. There are now 60 nuclear power plants in the United States. An article in the June 2007 issue of the Journal of American History did not hesitate to give protesters credit for the decline of the nuclear power industry: "The protesters lost their battle [when Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant opened in 1984], but in a sense they won the larger war, for nuclear plant construction ended across the country in 1986."

Sadly, when it closes Vermont Yankee will be no safer than it is today -- until the plant is dismantled and its 600 or so tons of nuclear waste is transferred to so-called "dry cask storage," with the casks surrounded by earthen berms. Entergy wants to wait 60 years -- by which time the company will likely no longer exist to pay for the clean up -- before dismantling Vermont Yankee. We trust the organizers of the anti-nuke rallies of recent years, Deb Katz of NukeBusters.org and Brattleboro's own Bob Bady among others, will continue their important work.


Entergy's lies

If Entergy could be made to pay cost of remediating the Vermont Yankee site--as it should--some of the true cost of nuclear energy will be revealed. And wouldn't it be forced into bankruptcy and its other plants made to close?

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