Community Action Works
Community Action Works

Working to decommission the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station

The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station is a power plant located in Plymouth, MA on the shore of the Cape Cod Bay. Construction to this site began in 1967 and the plant was given a 40-year license for operation. Pilgrim closed on May 31, 2019, thanks to decades of sustained community action. This has led to the decommissioning with a closure date of May 2019.

However, the fight didn’t end there: community leaders are still working on cleaning up the waste, protecting the bay and the state’s second-largest aquifer, and making sure that polluters — not the state — shoulder the cost.

Residents of the Cape were not satisfied with the proposed plan. Moving nuclear waste to an unsecured location and stored in canisters that, if leaks are detected, could not be repaired with current technology. Each canister contains more than half the radiation released at Chernobyl. The spent fuel is likely to be here for decades or indefinitely, adding more environmental distress to the community by the water.

Decommissioning done well is extremely expensive. Pilgrim Watch, a group of community leaders focused on providing facts and safety issues on Pilgrim, is continuing to hold the station owners accountable for payment. These community leaders are watchdogging the decommissioning process and pushing decision-makers to do the right thing.

The Pilgrim Watch has issued a report with further details on their work, and the work needed towards decommissioning in a healthy manner. Read more by clicking the link: DECOMMISSIONING HANDBOOK 06.20

We applaud Pilgrim Watch for the work they have been doing to protect their community’s health and environment for years to come.

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