Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Flying From Responsibility

Living very close to the nation's most troublesome nuclear power plant, Indian Point, I have understandable concern about security and safety. Apparently, in the wake of 9/11 many others do too. But the NRC deosn't see it that way.

ENS Link

WASHINGTON, DC, January 30, 2007 (ENS) - The Nuclear Regulatory Commission, NRC, Monday turned down a petition to strengthen security at nuclear power plants from Los Angeles-based Committee to Bridge the Gap, which monitors governmental radiation policy.

The commission's new rule defining the kind of threats nuclear power plant operators must address does not require protection against a deliberate hit by a large aircraft, as the group had recommended.

"The NRC has already required its licensees to take steps to mitigate the effects of large fires and explosions from any type of initiating event," the commission said in a statement.

"The active protection against airborne threats is addressed by other federal organizations, including the military," the NRC said.

Umm, yeah, right. Except that the areas those other agencies oversee does not include the design of nuclear plants. With respect to such things as the thickness of facility walls, only the NRC has the power to set standards.

Essentially, the NRC has abdicated an issue directly within its realm. Potentially, thousands could suffer. Bravo NRC.


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