Ossining, NY – State Assemblywoman Dana Levenberg has released the following statement in response to notification that Holtec International is planning to release radioactive wastewater into the Hudson River three months sooner than previously announced.
“Yesterday, Holtec informed the Indian Point Decommissioning Oversight Board that they intend to speed up their plan to begin discharging radioactive wastewater into the Hudson River as early as May. I am grateful to the Decommissioning Oversight Board and Riverkeeper for insisting that Holtec give us 30-day notice before any planned discharge into the river. Holtec’s timing shows profound disrespect for our community, particularly as we are approaching the season when so many are turning to the river for fishing, swimming, boating, and so much more. This is the number one issue constituents write to me about - I have heard from hundreds of community members who are opposed to Holtec’s plan. Many municipalities, including Westchester & Rockland counties, have passed resolutions opposing this plan and supporting the efforts of Senator Pete Harckham, myself, and a bipartisan coalition of state legislators to increase the state’s power over its own waterways. It is clear that the decision to move faster than planned is an attempt to sidestep the efforts of state representatives to explore alternatives.
My constituents are already overburdened with the negative environmental externalities left behind by industrial infrastructure, and we should not be treated like pawns in this process. What we need is a partner who will work with us to facilitate a safe and just decommissioning of this plant, in a way that respects the surrounding communities. The people of my district have made it clear that this conversation should not be one-sided; Holtec should not be the only participant driving the schedule. What is efficient for Holtec may not be what is in the best interest of our communities and our natural resources. There are other paths forward, as we have seen play out in other states. We deserve a robust conversation about how to proceed, centered on respect for the river itself and the people who live, work, and play here.”