By Arlene Williamson & Diane Turco, Cape Downwinders.
The results are in and Cape Cod residents have spoken. Last night Falmouth, Yarmouth, Brewster, Orleans and Harwich voters passed a public advisory question to call on Governor Patrick to request the Nuclear Regulatory Commission uphold their mandate to close the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station because the public safety of Cape Cod cannot be assured.
The success of this campaign had already been achieved in Provincetown, Truro, Wellfleet, Eastham, Chatham, Dennis, Mashpee, Bourne, and Sandwich. Barnstable will be the last Town to conclude the campaign when Barnstable voters speak at the ballot box this fall.
Last October, Massachusetts Emergency Management Director Kurt Schwartz informed Cape Cod residents if a nuclear accident occurred at Pilgrim they will be "in harm's way" of a radioactive plume. Cape Codders would be relocated because their properties will be so contaminated with radiation and therefore uninhabitable.
The Fukushima nuclear disaster in March, 2011 has displaced over 160,000 people from their homes indefinitely. Tom Setzer, an NRC official confirmed at an NRC open meeting last month in Plymouth a catastrophic nuclear accident just like Fukushima could happen at Pilgrim.
Cape Cod voters were clear by voting yes to close Pilgrim. Arlene Williamson, spokes person for Cape Downwinders stated "The risks of a nuclear accident increase every day the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station continues to operate".
The 41 year old facility has experienced nine automatic shutdowns just this year for leaking valves, leaking pipes, pump failures, power outages and most recently last Monday a fire broke out when turbine auxiliary pumps failed.
Cape Downwinders co-founder Diane Turco, stated "The Pilgrim reactor is recognized by Cape Cod voters as an ongoing imminent threat to their health and safety". The people of Cape Cod have spoken and now request Governor Patrick, as the Chief Public Safety Officer for the State of Massachusetts, to take action and call on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to close the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth."
Cape Downwinders: The mission of Cape Downwinders is to take action to protect the lives and welfare of the residents of Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket against the threat of death or injury resulting from the use of nuclear energy at Pilgrim and other locations.
There is no safe level of radiation.