Markey, Healey back increased oversight at Pilgrim site

U.S. Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA)
U.S. Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) | Courtesy of the U.S. Senate

Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Massachusetts Attorney General, Maura Healey issued statements Wednesday following recent news of increased oversight being prescribed for the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) announced that it would increase oversight on the Entergy Corp. owned and operated power station in Plymouth following repeated investigations of the facility after unscheduled shutdowns in 2013 and in 2015. The NRC placed the Pilgrim site in Column 4, which indicates multiple offenses and violations relating to operation and safety of the plant. 

“For decades, I have raised concerns about Pilgrim’s operations, security preparedness, the safety of the surrounding communities in the event of a nuclear accident, and the willingness of Entergy to dedicate sufficient resources to run the reactor safely,” Markey said in his statement. “Pilgrim has had long-standing and repetitive safety problems and unplanned shutdowns that require this, an increased level of NRC oversight, especially since it is the same design as the reactors that melted down during the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

"NRC must continue this aggressive oversight until Entergy can prove unequivocally that it has dedicated the resources, manpower and training to guarantee the safe and secure operation of this reactor," he said.

Healey echoed Markey's sentiment, saying she has called for increased safety measures to be implemented at the Pilgrim reactor.

“Today’s decision is a disturbing development, and my primary concern is with the safety and well-being of the residents of Massachusetts, particularly those who live near Pilgrim," she said. "Entergy must act swiftly and decisively to correct these issues and restore the public's trust in its ability to safely operate this plant.”

Markey went on to say Entergym which owns all three reactors in Column 4, should be held responsible for the distribution of anti-radiation medication to all those in the state who request it. 

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Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station

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