Cape Cod natives protest nearby Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant

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May 26, 2014, 12:57 pm
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(NECN: Alison King, Bourne, Mass.) -  Cape traffic is always backed up on Memorial Day weekend, and most all summer weekends.

But throw in a disaster at the nearby Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant and that traffic become even worse. Protestors were out early Monday, saying there would be "no escape from the Cape."
    
Maxine Wolfset is just one of several dozen Cape residents who spent a chunk of their Memorial Day standing alongside the entrance to the Sagamore Bridge.

"I'm scared silly living around Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant.  It's a monster in our midst," said Wolfset.

Diane Turco, of Cape Downwinders was more specific. "We're calling for closing Pilgrim Nuclear Reactor. It's one of the worst operating reactors in the country according to the NRC."
     
Turco says if there were an accident at the Plant, the current emergency and evacuation plan for the Cape is unacceptable
    
And she says they are not the only ones in Massachusetts who should be concerned based on the 2 emergency planning zones designed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
    
One is the inhalation pathway which is ten miles. Turco says, "The second one is the ingestion pathway which is 10 to 50 miles and as you can see, Cape Cod is in the 50-mile zone and the islands, but so is Boston."
    
The protestors are especially concerned because they say the Pilgrim plant is the same type of reactor that blew at Fukashima, Japan during the March 2011 Tsunami.
     
And they feel there are many better options when it comes to energy production than nuclear.
     
"We've got those beautiful wind turbines and we have more and more solar.  I would like to see a movement into just safer energy," said Jeri Dantzig of Martha's Vineyard.
    
Governor Deval Patrick sent a letter to the NRC two months ago expressing concerns about the plant, but many protestors say the state's elected officials are not doing enough.

"Their letter did not really push the NRC and the NRC needs pushing," said David Agnew of Cape Downwinders.
    
The NRC has re-licensed Pilgrim through 2032. The plant's operators say it is secure.
    
Protestors hope their efforts will help raise awareness that will put more pressure on the Federal Government to close the Pilgrim Power Plant.

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Tags: massachusetts, Cape Cod, Plymouth, protest, Alison King, pilgrim nuclear power plant, Sagemore Bridge
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