Today the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a nomination hearing for two Nuclear Regulatory Commission nominations, Dr. Alison Macfarlane, and the re-nomination of Commissioner Christine Svinicki. Anna Aurilio, Director of the Washington DC Office for Environment America issued the following statement in response:
“For decades the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has been a nuclear lapdog instead of a nuclear watchdog. Environment America is concerned the nuclear industry and its regulators have been in a race to the bottom when it comes to ensuring the safety of nuclear power, and they are gambling with our environment and our families’ health. That needs to change.
We have now seen that the consequences of losing this bet are enormous. The stricken Fukushima reactors in Japan are still emitting radiation, and aging power plants across the U.S. threaten public health, safety and drinking water.
We urge the Nuclear Regulatory Commission nominees to break this dangerous pattern by putting a moratorium on building any new plants. These nominees must protect the public from the risks of existing plants by shuttering plants such as San Onofre which are on fault lines, near coasts or large bodies of water, in the hurricane zone or of the same design as the reactors in Japan. We can and must move away from energy technologies that put our environment and families’ health at massive risk and repower our country with clean, renewable energy, like wind and solar power.”
Environment America is a federation of 29 state-based, citizen-funded environmental advocacy organizations working for a cleaner, greener, healthier future.