12/26/07 Result:After Chuck Devore failed to garner enough support in the California Assembly to bring nuclear power to California, he attempted to qualify a ballot measure. However, Assemblyman Devore was forced to withdraw his proposed ballot initiative as well after a failure to garner enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. Bridge the Gap and other groups worked hard to fight the initiative’s placement on the ballot, forcing a recognition that its chances at passage were dismal. This marked Devore’s second failure in recent months to bring nuclear power to California.
The California Attorney General, Legislative Analyst Office, and Finance Department have issued the official title and summary for a proposed initiative that would overturn the state’s nuclear safeguards law and permit construction of new nuclear plants. State law prohibits new reactors until the California Energy Commission certifies that there is a solution to the high level radioactive waste problem. The initiative would void that law, allow new reactors in about two-thirds of the state, including seismically active areas, and permit high level waste to be stored in numerous places in California for a hundred years. The official summary indicates there could be millions of dollars in costs to cleanup radioactive contamination at each new nuclear plant, and “potentially in the billions of dollars in the event of a major radioactive release.”
December, 2007: New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has filed suit in federal court against the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s failure to require protection of nuclear power plants against 9/11-type air attacks. CBG had proposed a rulemaking to upgrade such protections, a petition supported by seven state AGs, including New York’s, but the NRC had rejected any requirements to protect reactors from air attack. New York has now sued the NRC; click here to read New York’s brief.
- The State of New York’s brief can be viewed here (.pdf)
- The State of California’s amicus brief can be viewed here (.pdf)
- Public Citizen and Mothers for Peace’s brief can be viewed here (.pdf)
PROTECT REACTORS FROM TERRORIST ATTACK!
Update: 12/21/07 — CBG comments on NRC proposed rulemaking that does not include protection for a 9/11 style attack at a reactor.
Result: Although the NRC failed to adopt CBG’s Beamhenge proposal, CBG’s focus on reactor vulnerability to air attack sparked a national debate. Recently, the New York Attorney General filed a lawsuit against the NRC for failing to adopt Beamhenge.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has initiated an important rulemaking on reactor security, for which your comments are critical. A successful terrorist attack on a nuclear facility could release massive radioactivity, capable of producing tens of thousands of immediate deaths and hundreds of thousands of latent cancers, as well as contaminating an area the size of a big state for generations. Yet the NRC is proposing to DO NOTHING to improve the security of the nation’s nuclear plants. The proposed rulemaking explicitly is designed to codify the status quo, which is woefully inadequate, with no security upgrades at all from the situation currently in place. Write them to indicate how inappropriate their proposal is, and that security at reactors needs to be dramatically improved.
After a hearing on November 1, 2007, the LA Regional Water Quality Control Board decided to relax Boeing’s pollution permit. An Early Christmas for A Huge Polluter: At Boeing’s request, and over the objections of the community, the Board permanently waived enforcement of violations at about half of Boeing’s outfalls at its Santa Susana Field Laboratory and temporarily waived enforcement for the rest. Read CBG’s comment letter here. (.pdf)
10/12/07 Result:Governor signs historic cleanup bill into law, clearing the path for meaningful cleanup at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory.
(alert text follows)
It is critical that the Governor is aware of public support for the recent SSFL bill passed by the California Legislature, SB990. Please write or call Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger NOW. Copies of any letter should be sent to Susan Kennedy, Chief of Staff to the Governor; and Dan Dunmeyer, Cabinet Secretary.
The Governor, Susan Kennedy, and Dan Dunmeyer can be reached at the same address:
Phone: 916-445-2841 Fax: 916-445-4633
Address: State Capitol Building,
Sacramento, CA 95814
A copy of a letter should also be sent to Linda Adams, Secretary of Cal-EPA. She can be reached at the following address: 1001 “I” Street,
Sacramento, CA 96812
September 5, 2007: Seven Republicans joined Democrats in the California State Assembly in a 50-22 vote in favor of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory cleanup bill. One of the only nuclear meltdowns in the world occurred at SSFL. With passage in the State Assembly and the State Senate, Governor Schwarzenegger shortly thereafter signed the bill into law.