Statement From Senator Krueger Calling on Closure of Indian Point

For Immediate Release | March 24, 2011

Contact: Katie Kincaid | | 646-784-0485

"In the wake of the natural disasters that have devastated Japan and have unleashed a nuclear threat upon a reeling population, we must heed the warning of these catastrophic events and close the Indian Point nuclear facility. While I applaud the quick and decisive action taken by Governor Cuomo and Lieutenant Governor Duffy to address concerns over Indian Point with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), I’m afraid that any action short of closing this facility is simply not enough.

"Since 2003 I have called for the closure of Indian Point, an aging facility located in Westchester, and yet eight years later, the threat of a nuclear disaster still threatens downstate New Yorkers. Twenty million residents live and work within a 50 mile radius around Indian Point, most of whom are within the close confines of New York City; therein lies one of the greatest problems with Indian Point: its location. There is no improvement that can be made or test that can be administered that will change Indian Point’s location or its surrounding environment. In the event of a full-scale emergency, the frightening reality is that there is no effective evacuation strategy that would adequately serve and protect the people of New York City. There are simply too many people with too few exits.

"With so many lives in direct risk if disaster were to hit Indian Point, I find in unconscionable that this facility remains open. I cannot accept the rationale, as provided by Indian Point officials, that the plant can withstand the “strongest earthquake anticipated in the area,” and that it is therefore safe. As recent events - from the Tsunami that hit the Indian Coast to the Hurricane that ravaged the Gulf Coast to the earthquakes in Haiti and Japan - have proven, there is no way of predicting the growing power of natural disasters hitting around the world. Nor can we fully anticipate the domino effect a major event would produce. If Indian Point can handle a high level hurricane, will it also be prepared for the storm surge that follows? There are any number of cause-and-effect scenarios that could play out in the event of a natural disaster and I don’t believe that Indian Point is truly ready for every single one.

"It only takes one event, one worst case scenario, to set off a tragedy of unthinkable proportions. Whether that be a natural disaster or a man-made attack, by keeping Indian Point open and active we are playing Russian Roulette with the lives of 20 million people. There is no amount of energy production that is worth the lives of so many people. Indian Point must be closed."