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Phone Calls Needed ASAP to Prevent Expanded Gas Pipeline Project Near Nuclear Power Plant

August 13, 2015

You are urgently needed to convey the following message to Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino and the County Board of Legislators in the strongest possible terms. The safety of Westchester residents and more than 20 million people in the NY metro area and its infrastructure and economy are at stake.

 

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino: 914-995-2900

Westchester County Board of Legislators: 914-995-2800

Please keep calling Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino and the County Board of Legislators each day and tell them:

  1. The County Executive should NOT proceed with signing the license agreement that will enable Spectra Energy to move forward with the Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline project in view of very dangerous situation that has come to light with the new disclosure of internal documents from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. 
  1. The County Executive and the County Board of Legislators must exert the power of their offices to take immediate measures to work with nuclear and pipeline safety experts, elected officials at all levels, and agencies to advocate for a rigorous, independent and transparent risk assessment to be conducted immediately that clearly demonstrates that the AIM pipeline project can be safely sited before county agreements and construction can be considered.

 

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino: 914-995-2900

Westchester County Board of Legislators: 914-995-2800

 

Here’s why it’s imperative that you speak up:

Precious time is running out.  The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is expected to issue the Notice to Proceed to Spectra Energy in a matter of weeks in order to begin construction of the AIM pipeline next to Indian Point despite the fact that there are numerous grave concerns about the defective Entergy (the nuclear plant operator) and Nuclear Regulatory Commission risk analyses. Westchester County Executive Astorino is poised to sign a license agreement in the next few weeks granting significant acreage in the county’s Blue Mountain Reservation to Spectra, a key element needed to enable the AIM pipeline expansion project to proceed.

According to pipeline and nuclear safety experts the siting of the pipeline adjacent to Indian Point could cause a scenario similar to the Fukushima nuclear disaster, where plant operators were unable to cool reactors and spent fuel pools due to a loss of all power. The nuclear power and pipeline safety experts have been insisting that a thorough, independent and transparent risk assessment which includes a transient analysis is imperative but was never done. Westchester County Board of Legislators’ resolutions have also called for comprehensive, independent health and risk assessments.

New information obtained in FOIA documents from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission shows:

~NRC used falsified information to justify its conclusion that there is no additional risk posed by the siting of the AIM gas pipeline adjacent to the Indian Point nuclear facility.

~NRC knowingly used improper calculations that significantly underestimate the danger, do not comply with its own regulations, and defy the laws of pipeline thermodynamics.

~NRC used handwritten, unsigned, undated, falsified calculations to claim that this massive high-pressure natural gas pipeline only 105 feet from vital structures at Indian Point will pose no additional threat.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval of the AIM pipeline project was based on this false information. Had the NRC used accurate information and correct methodology concerning the dynamics of a pipeline rupture, the blast impact radius would be significantly larger and the siting of the pipeline alongside Indian Point would most certainly not have been approved.

 

According to the leading national pipeline expert, Rick Kuprewicz,”it appears the permitting agencies are attempting to take advantage of a loophole that permits the NRC to dismiss risks if such analysis can be categorized below a certain threshold value, while ignoring the severe consequences that might prevent the nuke plant to safely shutdown.” Kuprewicz further states, “Agency studies create the appearance of risk management tampering to favor a project agency decision and raise the question, Are involved agencies capable of performing a scientifically neutral study for such a sensitive issue?” “A truly independent safety analysis should be performed, subject to a reasonable open peer review. Security claims should not be permitted to shelter malfeasance in a scientific method involving incomplete risk analysis for such a highly sensitive infrastructure.”

 

Thank you for taking immediate action!

Please keep calling County Executive Rob Astorino and the County Board of Legislators:

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino: 914-995-2900

Westchester County Board of Legislators: 914-995-2800

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