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The safety of Indian Point continues to be one of the most serious issues facing the New York metropolitan region.  Indian Point is an aged nuclear power plant, only 24 miles from our nation’s most populous city, built on two seismic fault lines with a well-documented history of leaking spent fuel pools, unplanned shutdowns, and inadequate emergency notification and response systems.

I was the first Member of Congress to demand the closure of Indian Point.  I have called repeatedly for its closure, and have consistently opposed Entergy’s re-licensing application.

I introduced the Dry Cask Storage Act, which would require nuclear reactor operators to comply with an NRC-approved plan to transfer qualified spent nuclear fuel into dry cask storage within 7½ years. The two reactors at Indian Point have spent fuel in their pools containing many multiples more spent fuel than their pools were originally designed to hold. 

I am an original cosponsor of the Nuclear Power Licensing Reform Act, which would require the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to evaluate relicensing applications for nuclear power plants with the same stringent criteria used to license new plants.  Among items considered would be vulnerability to terrorist attacks, ability to evacuate within 50 miles of facility, and other criteria such as seismic data that was not available when facility initially licensed.

Spectra Algonquin Pipeline

Spectra Energy’s Algonquin Incremental Market natural gas pipeline expansion project seeks to install a 42-inch diameter high-pressure natural gas pipeline 150 feet from critical infrastructure at the Indian Point nuclear power plant. 

Because this project raises serious safety questions, I have called for an independent transient risk assessment to adequately evaluate the risks associated with the project. 

I am also concerned about the potential vulnerabilities of the proposed pipeline to cyberwarfare.  I have asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, with help from the Department of Homeland Security, to pay particular attention to the question of cybersecurity before issuing an order on rehearing regarding the construction of the pipeline.