Deregulation Increases Risk
It costs money to shut down a nuclear reactor for maintenance. Dr. Shirley Jackson, former Director of the NRC testified to Congress that private ownership of nuclear reactors combined with less profitability in a competitive electric marketplace may lead companies to run
reactors longer and resist costly shutdowns and repairs – compromising safety.
We have seen this at Pilgrim. For example, in earlier years refueling outages occurred every year. During outages, thorough inspections and repairs can be made. NRC succumbed to industry lobbying and now outages are every two years and re-fueling occurs at break neck speed. At the NRC Pilgrim Annual Assessment Meeting, March 2004, it was reported that Pilgrim’s preventative [elective] maintenance backlog remained high. If regulators do not require action, why should a for-profit industry spend the money?
The situation is not helped by the fact that Pilgrim is owned by a limited liability company – Entergy, Nuclear
- and that the company is looking at spinning off its northeastern nuclear
companies into yet another company.
To Learn More …
Two steps to another Nuclear Accident, source:
Three Mile Island Alert