Senate Will Vote On Relicensing Vermont Yankee Before Town Meeting Break

I was here in the Statehouse for testimony this morning by Fairewinds Associates, Inc regarding Vermont Yankee before the Senate Natural Resources Committee.  At lunch we were asked to stay and come to the press conference held in Senate Chambers.  Press Release Below in its entirety:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 16, 2010

CONTACT:

Alexandra MacLean, (802) 828-3806

Montpelier, Vt – Senate President Pro Tem Peter Shumlin, today announced that the Senate will vote before the town meeting break on whether or not relicensing the Vermont Yankee nuclear power station to operate beyond its scheduled closing date is in the best interest of Vermonters.

“It is the responsibility of the General Assembly to vote on the continued operation of Vermont Yankee,” said Senator Peter Shumlin.  “We have a responsibility to provide Vermonters and Vermont businesses a direction for our energy future, provide our electric utilities with sufficient time to secure delivery of energy, and in the event that the plant ceases operating as scheduled in 2012, provide the workers at Vermont Yankee adequate time to secure employment.”

Senate President Pro Tem Peter Shumlin has asked the Senate Finance Committee to take up the legislation relating to the continued operation of the Vermont Yankee nuclear energy generating plant this week.  The full Senate is expected to consider the question of continued operation before legislators return home for town meeting.

“Vermonter’s deserve better than what Entergy Louisiana has to offer.  The reactor is too old to operate reliably past its scheduled closure in 2012.  The corporation has misled our public officials and the people of Vermont,” said Senator Peter Shumlin.  “Vermonter’s confidence in Vermont Yankee has been further marred by Entergy’s attempt to create a debt ridden spin off corporation to take ownership of the plant.  The cleanup fund is already more than half a billion dollars short and Vermonters cannot afford a corporation that may shift that cost to ratepayers.  There is also frustration with Entergy/Enexus’ power purchase proposal, which would raise Vermonter’s electricity rates by nearly 50% and provide us with only 11% of our power. Operating Vermont Yankee beyond its scheduled closing date of March 12, 2012 is not in the best interests of Vermonters and unnecessary delay is an irresponsible option for our energy future.”

[emphasis added]

8 thoughts on “Senate Will Vote On Relicensing Vermont Yankee Before Town Meeting Break

  1. here’s a fun item from vtdigger

    in his latest press conference, the Governor said some in the legislature were being “emotional” about these issues; personally, I find this offensive in the extremis (as Sgt. Phil Esterhaus used to say on Hill Street Blues)

    expressing concern about a radiation leak or the possibility of getting stuck for hundreds of millions in unfunded decommissioning costs from the proposed spin-off is what most would consider rational

    and when asked if he had the authority to close the plant if it posed a threat, Jim Douglas said “I don’t know the answer to that” and that he would he would wait before looking into it

    this is unquestionably one of the strangest things I’ve ever heard; does he have an emergency plan (I thought Dubie was in charge of that)? does he understand the concept? the point is that if an emergency occurs, that’s probably not a good time to BEGIN thinking about the options and his authority

    frankly, if he actually believes it’s OK to wait to address issues like this, I don’t think he’s fit to be governor; seriously

  2. Douglas and Dubie say we should have “the facts” before making a decision and that we should not do “political theater”.

    I was at the Legislature a couple of times in the last two weeks and I know the committees were taking testimony and looking at real information.

    What was Douglas doing???  Getting “the facts”? I don’t know.

    I applaud the courage of Maggie and Arnie and the Senators and all others who are seeking real information!

    Thank you.

  3. Maybe they decided to follow the steps of the UVM senate??? We just had a vote on relicensing today! Just kidding, this is great news, now we just need to start cranking out the renewables!!

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