- Ben Kaplan
SENATOR MORAN SECURES VICTORY IN NUCLEAR PLANT TRANSPARENCY, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BILL PASSED
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 3, 2022
CONTACT: Stephen Maher, Chief of Staff
Office of Senator Susan L. Moran
SENATOR MORAN SECURES VICTORY IN NUCLEAR PLANT TRANSPARENCY
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BILL PASSED BY LEGISLATURE:
REQUIRES SPECIAL COMMISSION TO REVIEW ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC IMPACT
(11/3/2022-BOSTON) The Legislature unanimously passed the Economic Development and Relief package on Thursday. As part of the bill, Senator Susan Moran (D -Falmouth) successfully fought for the creation of a special commission to require a study of the economic and environmental impacts of a proposal by Holtec International to discharge radioactive wastewater into Cape Cod Bay.
“I will not stand aside while Holtec puts profits over communities, and I am grateful the Legislature won’t either. “We need complete transparency and public input during this process,” said Senator Moran.
The commission will be required to complete a report on their findings and recommendations by November 1, 2024, and hold a total of four public hearings, one each in Dukes, Plymouth, Bristol, and Barnstable Counties. Discharge of spent fuel pool water would be prohibited until 90 days after the completion of the report.
The measure is part of the Commonwealth’s response to Holtec International’s November 2021 announcement that they intended to release one million gallons of radioactive wastewater into Cape Cod Bay. The proposal has been met with widespread outcry from members of the public, as well as federal, state, and local officials, specifically raising the lack of sufficient regulatory oversight and opportunities for public input during the decommissioning process. On May 6, Senator Moran testified before the Congressional Subcommittee on Clean Air, Climate, and Nuclear Safety, chaired by Senator Markey and Representative Keating, in a rare field hearing held at Plymouth Town Hall. At that hearing, Senator Markey and Representative Keating secured a commitment from Holtec to submit the spent fuel pool water for third-party testing.
“So much of our economy, and local identity is tied to the ocean; we need a comprehensive understanding of the impacts any dumping of water will have, and this study will ensure greater transparency before any steps are taken by Holtec,” said Senator Su Moran. “This victory is a culmination of countless hours of advocacy by numerous activists, and the bipartisan support from the State and Federal delegation to get this over the finish line.”
“The voices of the Cape and Islands’ residents must be included in the Pilgrim Nuclear Station decommissioning conversation,” said Senator Julian Cyr. “The release of contaminated water into Cape Cod Bay has the potential to significantly impact our environment and the lives of locals. Senator Moran’s amendment creates a commission to examine the decommissioning process and requires hearings in impacted counties, which would ensure public input and transparency. I am thankful to Senator Moran for her diligence and for standing up for our community members. I look forward to continuing to work together in these efforts.”
The final bill was sent to the Governor’s desk today for his signature.