Citizens Intervene To Halt Sequoyah Plant Relicensing

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Local activists and citizens groups filed a legal petition on Monday against the Sequoyah Plant with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. They called upon the agency to deny a license extension for the aging nuclear plant, listing eight specific safety and environmental reasons for denial.

Stewart Horn, president of BEST-MATRR, a local opposition group filing the petition, said, “Their application is sorely lacking.” Referring to continual whistleblower complaints, he added, ”We are not sure of TVA’s ability to manage in the future without endangering residents.”

The petition details the increasing danger from Sequoyah to nearly a million people living and working within 50 miles of the plant.  A major finding shows that during the last 14 years, incident reports average 7.14 problems per year, but for the last six years the trend indicates increasing numbers of safety-related incidents, both in frequency and severity.

“We contend that the ice-condenser design, especially at an aging nuclear plant, exposes citizens to the most risk of any nuclear reactor ever built.  As age problems mount and we apply lessons learned from Fukushima, it’s prudent to decommission Sequoyah as soon as possible rather than allowing a license extension,” said Lou Zeller, executive director of Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League. 

BREDL research shows that citizens in Hamilton, McMinn, Monroe and Marion counties within 50 miles of Sequoyah have higher cancer death rates than Tennessee state average in most years. 

“Our knowledge of the real risks of nuclear power has increased exponentially since these reactors were designed and first licensed.  The massive amounts of radiation they create are a regional threat.  Radiation from Fukushima caused the long-term evacuation of 160,000 people and contamination of over 11,000 square miles of land for hundreds of years.  TVA needs to close these reactors before we suffer a similar tragedy,” said Don Safer, Tennessee Environmental Council board chairman. 

The Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League with its local chapter Bellefonte Efficiency & Sustainability Team and subset Mothers Against Tennessee River Radiation (BEST/MATRR) filed the petition.  TVA and the NRC now have 25 days to reply.  After that, a hearing on the intervention could be ordered by the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board.


Sign Up To Get The Latest News, Opinions From Chattanoogan.com In Real Time; Win Set Of Chattanooga Photo Books

Sign up for our Facebook and Twitter feeds and you will get the  local news in "real time." You will also be entered for a chance to win the complete set of the Chattanooga Photo Books published by Chattanoogan.com. We will give away three sets of The Remarkable Stokes Collection, Railroads In and Around Chattanooga and Paul Hiener's Historic Chattanooga to our new Facebook ... (click for more)

Corker Says President Trump Is Keeping His Word To Veterans

Senator Bob Corker on Fridayday released the following statement after President Donald J. Trump signed into law the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017 (S.1094). The bipartisan legislation will increase accountability within the VA by streamlining the process to fire misbehaving and underperforming employees, holding VA executives ... (click for more)

Tom Edd Wilson Was A Great Visionary

We want to add to the many heart-felt messages that have been expressed regarding the recent passing of Tom Edd Wilson, a truly great visionary.    While he made his mark on many local organizations, Tom Edd will always hold a special place in the hearts of those who worked closely with him at Erlanger.   We benefited greatly from his steady guidance, leadership ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Luther’s B-17 Showed Up

I am a huge sap for our veterans and just the other days a reader shared the ultimate story about a guy who returned to his sweetheart at the end of World War II. The little town of Miller. Missouri, is located in the southwest corner of the state and the biggest thing to ever happen in Lawrence County is when a native son, James Lawrence, hollered “Don’t Give Up The Ship” in the ... (click for more)

Inclement Weather Forces Cancellation Of Thursday Night's Lookouts Game

Not only was Tropical Storm Cindy responsible for the cancellation of Tuesday's Southern League All-Star Game, but now the storm has also resulted in the cancellation of Thursday night's game at AT&T Field with the Pensacola Blue Wahoos. The First Half North Division Champion Lookouts announced that Thursday's (6/22) game has been postponed due ... (click for more)

Cleveland High School Selects Joey Knox As Head Wrestling Coach

Cleveland High School has selected Joey Knox as the next head coach for the Blue Raider Wrestling program.  Coach Knox has been with the wrestling program as an assistant since 2013.  During his assistant coaching tenure, the team has secured six Team State Championships, including five individual State Champions and 20 State Medalists.    Cleveland High ... (click for more)