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-- of the ongoing nuclear crisis in Japan is putting more attention on the safety of nuclear power plants here at home.
I'm joined by John Kelly the former director of licensing for Entergy nuclear operations which is the company that owns the Indian point nuclear facility in New York first John.
-- and if you will on the developments of the day.
That the Japanese government is saying they found plutonium in the soil around -- Okajima and also that there is contaminated water coming out did not going into the ground water.
Around -- -- you know how serious -- those development.
It's it's certainly are serious but it's something that you would expect under the circumstances there this is a class five accident under the IAEA DA guidelines.
Which means that there's a significant potential for off site contamination and so clearly we have if there.
It's a serious accident but if they do seem to be getting control of it.
You can the they are reviewed -- place in the electrical supplies to the pumps they are bringing in fresh water as opposed to the -- -- they've been using before.
This will take a long time to resolve I think they being the the anniversary of the Three Mile Island actually in this country.
That took fourteen years before they actually finished cleaning up pulled of the materials that were involved in the next.
There was no one of the things I was doing some research contagious and how many accidents we had here both in this country and around the globe.
And since 1956 I think -- there there are record and 99 on record 99 incidents both civilian and military nuclear incidents 56 in this country.
Some of them how serious are they because at Indian point where you work for so many years.
They had a few of them even in 2005 a tritium -- -- people here tritium leak and they freak out all of this is this is awful run for the hills.
Is it really that serious.
No it's when it's serious because it's a -- and the plants not supposed to -- -- -- but it's not serious in terms of any radiation risk to the public.
And that's the distinction that people have to make.
One of the things that people don't understand is this is an industry which has it completely open book there are inspectors living on site literally there were overlooked.
111000 hours of inspection and Indian point 2008.
You have residents -- who are there watching everything you do everything and anything that is out of the ordinary is recorded.
And so it is and it's appropriate that it be reported to the public.
But the concern here -- -- in terms of any risk that to the public there was essentially no risk to the public as a result of that traditionally.
You know one of the things people I think look at this what happened in Japan is.
OK it was built to a -- to do was built to withstand an earthquake.
And a small tsunami or a large tsunami but not as big of a tsunami as the one that they got -- people say.
Why wouldn't expect to shoot tsunami and -- in -- nine point oh earthquake because.
That's something that would be reasonable for somebody do expect there and you can -- they didn't why don't you they may not expected -- that the natural disasters at plants here in the states.
In the well.
And I can't really speak to the design basis for the plants in Japan I really don't have detailed knowledge on that -- my understanding is that they withstood the earthquake well but the tsunami is the the risk that they did not fully anticipate.
And it took out there on site generators.
Indian the Indian point plants are designed to fit to meet any possible earthquake that might occur in that area.
And there's no potential for tsunami on the Hudson River we -- almost thirty miles from the ocean and so there's no possible risk of of that there.
The plants are designed well.
When I worked there as you mentioned for over thirty years I retired eight years ago and yet I still live less than four miles from the plants I know that this thing.
You mentioned that you you you know that that the Indian point is safe.
What would be the impact if everybody got too scared here in this country -- close Indian point and other nuclear power facilities like Indian point of even if temporarily.
Well -- In nuclear power generates about 20% of electricity in this country and the Indian point plants meet the by about 30% of the electric needs of Westchester in New York City.
A recent analysis that was done for the -- just the business council showed that of Indian point was summarily shut down.
It would increase the cost of electricity in Westchester in New York City by about a 150%.
And substantially reduce the reliability of the power that would be available.
So it's it would have a significant environment and -- economic impact.
It's the number of -- politicians have been stating that we should shut the plant down immediately.
And yet there's nothing been done to address how you would replace that -- and then you can't just put a plant doubt they have to generate electricity it takes about.
Eight years he paid years eight years to get a plan from planning staged operation.
And at this point in time.
There are no detailed plans in place to address replacement of that power so it certainly costs would go way up for our electricity here in the city and we liability would go -- down and that's another concern and I don't even Allison thank you so much we appreciate as --
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