Today, 138 groups representing hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers, sent a letter to Governor Hochul, organized by the Stop Holtec Coalition, urging her to stop Holtec International’s plan to dump one million gallons of radioactive wastewater into the Hudson River. A public hearing on the Indian Point decommissioning process is scheduled for Tuesday, April 25.
In the letter, the groups called for Governor Hochul to support the prompt passage of S05181/A05338 to stop radioactive wastewater dumping statewide, and called for on-site storage of Holtec’s toxic waste. In less than two months, 21 municipalities including 4 counties have passed resolutions or written letters in opposition to Holtec’s dumping plan, and nearly half a million people have signed a petition against the discharges.
“Holtec’s ploy is ludicrously dangerous — and it’s on Governor Hochul to stop the dump,” said Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director of Food & Water Watch. “Years after activists successfully halted the nuclear threat in the Hudson Valley, we are called to arms yet again to defend precious water resources from industry’s expediency. Governor Hochul must listen to the people, and do everything in her power to keep radioactive waste out of our water. That means passing S05181/A05338.”
“Governor Hochul must support the pending legislation in Albany to prevent dumping of radiologically contaminated water into the Hudson River,” said Marilyn Elie of Indian Point Safe Energy Coalition. “Storing tritiated water on site is the best option and the most prudent thing to do until all questions about its safety are answered.”
“It is highly irresponsible to permit the Hudson River to continue to serve as a dumping ground for polluters. Leading health experts have made it abundantly clear that there is no safe dose of radioactive materials, and its impacts are particularly harmful to developing fetuses, children and women. With so much at stake, every measure must be taken to protect the health and safety of surrounding river communities and beyond,” said Ellen Weininger, Director of Educational Outreach at Grassroots Environmental Education. “We urge Governor Hochul, in the strongest possible terms, to follow the science and take immediate action to halt Holtec’s dangerous plan to dump radioactive waste into the Hudson River.”
“Governor Hochul needs to step up and work on the solution to store wastewater on-site. We are counting on her to make this happen by directing her state agencies for an administrative stop as well as ensuring the legislation to prevent Holtec’s plan to pollute our Hudson with radioactive waste gets passed well before any dumping can take place,” said Tina Volz-Bongar of United for Clean Energy. “Furthermore, so many are negatively impacted by the radioactive materials from Indian Point, including children at the elementary school up the river–we need the Governor to also make sure those kids are relocated and that site is fully tested for radioactive contaminants.”
“In addition to being New York State’s crown jewel for outdoor recreation and a significant economic driver, the Hudson River Estuary supports a biologically rich ecosystem, providing critical habitats and essential spawning and breeding grounds for species like striped bass, bluefish, and blue crab, bald eagles, herons and many others,” said Tracy Brown, President of Hudson Riverkeeper. “Riverkeeper stands with our partners and municipal officials in calling on Governor Hochul to support the passage of S05181/A05338, which would prohibit any discharge of radioactive waste and protect the health of the Hudson River.”
“Westchester for Change applauds the united front that our community organizations and elected officials in the Hudson Valley have shown in opposition to Holtec’s plan to dump radioactive wastewater in the Hudson River. We urge Governor Hochul to immediately join this effort by using the power of her office to halt this ill-advised and dangerous proposal,” said Susan Van Dolsen of Westchester for Change.
*To best ensure public health and safety, Holtec should be required use the precautionary principle and keep radioactive fuel pool water contained on site – and not release it out into the environment, where it can bioaccumulate in the aquatic ecosystem and put swimmers and paddlers and others at risk of exposure,” said Manna Jo Greene, Environmental Action Director for Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. “When passed, Governor Holchul should urgently sign the Harckham-Levenberg Bill and the Indian Point Decommissioning Oversight Board should do everything in its power to ensure the best possible alternative is implemented.”
“Governor Hochul must protect the health and safety of her constituents; that is her primary mandate! People eat fish, swim and boat in the Hudson and seven communities depend on it for their drinking water. No radioactive wastewater dumping in the Hudson; store it onsite,” said Suzannah Glidden of Stop the Algonquin Pipeline Expansion.
The Hudson River must not serve as a dumping ground for nuclear industry polluters. The spent fuel pool wastewater remaining at the Indian Point nuclear plant site that Holtec plans to dump contains radioactive contaminants, including tritium. Exposure to this radioactive isotope is linked to cancer, miscarriages, genetic defects and other adverse health effects. There is no safe dose of radiation and its harmful impacts are cumulative.