Editor's note: The following letter to the editor was received in response to the story, "Anti-nuclear groups ask Governor Baker to be proactive about Pilgrim", posted on Thursday, March 5.
To the Editor:
Regarding evacuation and emergency planning, Entergy employee Lauren Burm said, "Years of analysis went into the initial selection of a 10-mile zone, and additional years of study by the NRC have determined that it is the appropriate size to ensure public safety”.
This statement is factually wrong. The 10-mile zone is a one-size-fits-all guideline developed in 1980 after the partial meltdown at Three Mile Island. In 1996 the NRC and FEMA stated:
“The exact size and configuration of the EPZs [Emergency Planning Zones] surrounding a particular nuclear power reactor should be determined in relation to local emergency response needs and capabilities as they are affected by such conditions as demography, topography, land characteristics, access routes…”
Pilgrim Nuclear is the only nuclear plant in the U.S. where a significant population is located near the plant, separated only by a body of water, Cape Cod Bay, and with no practical way to evacuate in a timely manner.
More disconcerting is that Entergy is so quickly willing to ignore local geographical reality, and the safety concerns of over 100,000 Cape and Island adult citizens and registered voters who want to be included in an emergency plan.