A post-operation resolution regarding the closure of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station was unanimously approved by town meeting voters Monday night.
The resolution had several parts, requesting immediate decommissioning and dismantlement of the plant in the case that it does close, the safe removal of spent fuel, limiting the storage of waste at the plant and continuing off-site emergency planning.
Mary Lampert gave a brief presentation on the article, highlighting several concerns regarding the potential closure of the Pilgrim Station.
“Pilgrim is unlikely to operate until the end of its license in 2032, simply for financial reason,” she said. “They cannot compete with cheaper sources of energy in our deregulated market, such as natural gas and renewable energy.”
Lampert said the amount of risk does not end when Pilgrim closes. Her main concern is the spent fuel pool, which will continue to be a risk factor until it is removed from the site.
“It is important to educate public officials now to prepare ahead of time and start lobbying for what should be done to reduce the risk in the period of decommissioning,” she said.
General accepted practices for a plant that has closed is to do a “SAFESTOR” decommissioning, which could be delayed for up to 60 years. In that situation, the spent fuel is left onsite for several decades before it is removed from the site. Lampert suggested immediate dismantlement of the site, which would aim to remove all spent fuel and unnecessary items from the site as quickly as possible.
The article also requested that the town send the text of the resolution to state and federal legislative delegations, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Entergy, Corp., the company that runs the Pilgrim Station.
The resolution was approved unanimously by Town Meeting voters.