Close Pilgrim Nuclear Plant Now, Protesters Say

By Steve LeBlanc, Associated Press

BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Activists seeking to close the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station gathered at the Statehouse to press for its immediate shutdown.

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth . (WBZ-TV)

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth. (WBZ-TV)

The group Pilgrim Watch is delivering a letter to Gov. Charlie Baker calling on him to urge the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to close the plant now.

Thursday’s protest comes more than a week after owners of the Plymouth facility announced plans to close Massachusetts’ only nuclear power plant by 2019. That’s not soon enough for activists who have lobbied for years to close the plant.

The protesters, including about a dozen students from Nauset Regional High School, joined the protest. The protest kicked off with song called “Downwind Rising Up,” according to WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones’s Twitter page.

A song called "Downwind " opened the anti-Pilgrim nuclear plant protest on Thursday. (Photo by Lana Jones/WBZ NewsRadio 1030)

A song called “Downwind ” opened the anti-Pilgrim nuclear plant protest on Thursday. (Photo by Lana Jones/WBZ NewsRadio 1030)

Follow Lana on Twitter

Mary Lampert of the protest group said Pilgrim is entering a dangerous phase and she fears owner Entergy Corp. won’t properly maintain a plant it’s planning to close.

Entergy has said cutting corners on safety isn’t an option and that the plant’s neighbors have no reason worry.

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth. (WBZ-TV)

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth. (WBZ-TV)

The company has pledged up to $60 million to address safety issues raised by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, even as it prepares to shut the plant down in the coming years.

State Senator Dan Wolf, a longtime Pilgrim opponent and sponsor of two bills that would set aside funds to ensure safety at the plant, doubts the company’s promise.

“They are protecting the risk of their shareholders and putting that ahead of the risk of the citizens in the shadow of that plant,” he said during the protest.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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