Residents Have Many Questions For Nuke Officials

Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff will conduct an open house, from 6 to 8 p.m. April 18, regarding their annual safety assessment of the Limerick nuclear power plant.


Donna Cuthbert went from a career in women's fashion to a lifestyle that could give Erin Brockovich a provocative new perspective.

But Cuthbert's day-to-day work is far from glamorous.

She eats, drinks and breathes byproducts of nuclear reactor operations - literally, she says.

Cuthbert on Monday shared some of the concerns she and other members of The Alliance For A Clean Environment will raise Wednesday at an open house hosted by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to discuss the annual safety performance of Exelon's Limerick nuclear power plant

The group members plan to address a at the plant. But their worries plunge far deeper and further than local wells and the Schuylkill River. 

ACE -- a non-profit founded in the late 1980's that disbanded, rejuvenated in 1995 and has roughly 1,000 members -- works to protect the environment and address public health issues in Berks, Chester and Montgomery counties.

"We started to dig into and investigate the toxic triangle," Cuthbert said of what she describes as a lethal environmental cocktail that includes a closed landfill in West Pottsgrove Township, former local chemical plant and Exelon's Limerick nuclear site.

Cuthbert said ACE will confront the NRC about health issues, a high infant mortality rate, fire safety issues and learning disabilities among people who live near the Limerick plant. 

"We want the safety upgrades done now and we want the place shut down," she said. "This plant was only designed for 40 years ... We're dealing with old, dirty, dangerous technology."

Details about Wednesday's meeting:

Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff will conduct an open house, from 6 to 8 p.m. April 18, regarding the agency’s annual assessment of safety performance for the Limerick nuclear power plant.

The event will be held at the Limerick Township Municipal Building, 646 W. Ridge Pike.

The meeting format will allow citizens to discuss concerns with NRC officials assigned to the plant.

Read more:

- The company responded to a report that said 6.7 million people in the state "could be at risk of radioactive contamination from a leak or accident at a local nuclear power plant."

Tom Bartman April 17, 2012 at 05:57 PM
No, the plants were not designed to operate for 40 years but like an aircraft, how much of it is original after x number of years? Systems are overhauled and replaced. Wind power, especially in this area is nothing but a talking point and a gimmick. Recall 14,000 wind turbines across the US have been abandoned due to extraordinary maintenance costs, high failure rate and due to what happens when the winds stops blowing. Even greenies are abandoning support because of the impact on birds and endangered species. Wind is inefficient, unreliable, and only works with subsidies. Mark my words - in the future, we'll be questioning "what were we thinking" in regard to these massive bird blending, property value degrading, radar jamming, noise polluting, wind-turbine-syndrome generating structures littering the countryside views. Sean is right. Shutting down a nuclear plant will only result in more coal-fired plants and a spike in electric rates. I am all for nuclear. Limerick has done a phenomenal job in the 26 years of generation. Look at their safety record - it is one of the highest in the nation.
Tom Bartman April 17, 2012 at 07:47 PM
Abandoning Economic suicide would result from abandoning nuclear power. It is not dangerous. Even hyro power is more dangerous. Recall the Banqiao Dam failure when 230,000 people were killed in 1975 making it the most catastrophic power related tragedy. Nuclear power has been proven to be the safest form of power in a large scale installation.
Joey Mulligan April 17, 2012 at 10:37 PM
Stephens and Toms comments are amazingly accurate and relevant to this issue. Just the Facts just doesnt get it.
Tom Bartman April 18, 2012 at 02:34 AM
Yeah if only I could type today. I wrote: "Abandoning Economic suicide would result from abandoning nuclear power." <--- What is THAT, Tom? Wake up! I meant to say "Abandoning nuclear power would result in economic suicide."
Suzanne jefferis April 22, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Amazing lack of information of the 'locals' as to the dangers of nuclear power and it's radioactive waste. The health effects always seem to take second place to corporate profits. You might think the locals were the profiteers rather than potential cancer patients. I imagine it would get some steam out of them if their properties were condemned and they had to relocate due to a meltdown.


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