Cape Downwinders Rally On Anniversary of Fukushima Disaster, Call For Pilgrim Shutdown

March 11, 2016

BOSTON – Anti-nuclear activists will rally at the State House today on the fifth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, and will call for the shutdown of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant in Plymouth

The Cape Downwinders say the rally will be a show of support for the people of Japan on the fifth anniversary of a magnitude 9.0-earthquake that struck offshore and triggered a devastating tsunami, killing more than 18,000 people. The Fukushima nuclear power plant spewed radiation after being hit by the tsunami. About 180,000 people in the northeastern region of Japan remain displaced because of the disaster.

Activists will protest the continued operation of Pilgrim, saying the plant presents a safety risk for the public. Protesters cite Pilgrim’s similar design to the Fukushima plant and the station’s recent downgrading by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission as their concerns with the facility.

The Downwinders will deliver a letter to Governor Charlie Baker detailing what they say are failures by the NRC to properly enforce safety regulations at Pilgrim.

The NRC released its annual assessment of the Plymouth facility last week, saying it is operating safely and does not need additional oversight at this time. Pilgrim was placed in Column 4 of the NRC’s Action Matrix last year, opening the plant to increased federal scrutiny. The designation makes the Plymouth facility one of the worst-performing reactors in the country, along with two plants in Arkansas.

Content from the Associated Press was used in this report.