Indian Point Opponents Speak Out at NRC Hearing

Environmental groups and anti-nuclear activists continue to spar with business and labor leaders over the future of the Indian Point nuclear plant, the 40-year-old plant that sits 24 miles north of New York City.

The latest public skirmish was Tuesday night at a public hearing the Nuclear Regulatory Commission hosted to field questions about the agency's latest annual safety assessment of the plant. Indian Point passed that review.

Earlier in the day, a coalition of Indian Point opponents including Riverkeeper, Clearwater and current and former area politicians unveiled their own report card for the plant, giving Indian Point a grade of "F" for its handling of spent nuclear fuel and for its evacuation plan, among other subjects.

At the commission hearing, activists peppered federal regulators with questions about safety and suggested the plant was too old and a danger to the densely populated region.

Regulators insisted the plant is safe and said much of the equipment has been upgraded through the years.

Business and labor leaders also voiced support for Indian Point, which they said is a vital part of the area economy.

Plant owner Entergy has been trying since 2007 to re-license Indian Point's two reactors for another 20 years. The State of New York and other opponents have filed challenges to that application.

There will be more hearings on the license renewal, possibly by the end of this year.