CSRA Activists Concerned With Nuclear Power Plant Vogtle including Georgia WAND and Savannah Riverkeeper: Over Two Dozen Groups File Legal Action Involving Safety Concerns About Licensing Atomic Power Plants Across America

Multiple Legal Challenges: All Nuclear Reactor Licensing Must Be Delayed Or Cancelled Due To Existing Federal Law

Augusta Area Activists, Georgia WAND, Savannah Riverkeeper and Other Groups are Among 26 Organizations Across the U.S. Calling on Nuclear Regulatory Commission to Follow Legal Requirements for Reactor Licensing and Re-licensing

Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions (Georgia WAND)

Savannah Riverkeeper

Waterkeeper Alliance Member

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Not only should the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) slow down reactor licensing and re-licensing in order to address a wide range of post-Fukushima health and safety concerns, but the reality is that the NRC is required to apply the brakes in order to comply with existing federal law, according to 19 separate legal challenges filed today by a total of 26 public interest groups and several individuals.

Among the 26 groups is the Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions (Georgia WAND), Savannah Riverkeeper, and the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.

Activists Annie Laura Stephens of Waynesboro and Rev. Terence Dicks of Augusta are listed as part of the Georgia WAND’s portion of the legal challenges.

Ms. Stephens and Mr. Dicks are longtime human rights and health activists in the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA) who have serious concerns about expansion and other plans involving nuclear power Plant Vogtle along the Savannah River near Waynesboro.

Bobbie Paul, Executive Director of Georgia WAND

Plant Vogtle near Waynesboro is named among “the other plants across the U.S.” that activists have listed in their legal concerns, said Bobbie Paul, Executive Director of Georgia WAND.

“We are all united,” said Paul of the legal actions. “Onward we go – we’ll stop them against all odds!”

Federal and State officials along with the owners of Plant Vogtle are engaging in “environment racism,” critics say.

African American residents of Waynesboro say Plant Vogtle was placed in their community because officials knew that low income black residents would have a hard time fighting expansions and other decisions involving the nuclear power plant run by Georgia Power.

The groups contend that under federal law, the NRC may not issue or renew a single reactor license until it has either strengthened regulations to protect the public from severe accident risks or until it has made a careful and detailed study of the environmental implications of not doing so.

The groups are also pursuing a technical finding from high in the NRC that leads to upgraded safety standards.

“What we’ve learned in the wake of Japan’s nuclear disaster — and what the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s experts concluded — is that current regulations are fundamentally inadequate,” said Phillip Musegaas, Hudson Program Director of Riverkeeper, Inc., which in August 2011 filed a contention document related to the Indian Point reactor in New York State with the NRC.

“They simply do not provide the level of safety required by laws including the National Environmental Policy Act and the Atomic Energy Act,” Musegaas said.

“The law requires regulators to take this information into account before issuing any licenses for reactors,” Musegaas said. “Our filing today is intended to force them to do so.”

Plant Vogtle stats from Wikipedia

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s 90-day review of the lessons learned from the meltdowns and radioactive release at Fukushima produced substantial new information that raised health and safety concerns that now must be considered in formal environmental impact statements, the groups contend.

Because of this, existing environmental impact statements for all reactors in the licensing process fail to satisfy the requirements of NEPA, and issuing licenses prior to the completion of supplemental environmental impact statements would be illegal.

“Significant regulatory changes are needed to ensure that existing or new nuclear reactors do not pose unacceptable safety and environmental risks to the public,” said Dr. Arjun Makhijani, a nuclear expert who prepared a declaration that will be filed with the contentions.

“In light of the disastrous and ongoing events at Fukushima, it is clear that the issues of public safety raised by the Task Force are exceptionally grave,” Dr. Makhijani said.

The delays that could result from additional analysis are likely to be substantial, and it is possible license applications could be rejected altogether at the end of the licensing process.

If a license is issued prior to the NRC conducting the required environmental analyses, the commission could be held accountable by federal courts.

The contentions address reactors at facilities including Diablo Canyon, Watts Bar, Bellefonte, Summer, South Texas, Comanche Peak, Vogtle, Turkey Point, Indian Point, Calvert Cliffs, Davis-Besse, Seabrook, Fermi, Levy, Shearon Harris, North Anna, Bell Bend and W.S. Lee.

The 26 groups filing contentions with the NRC in August 2011 are listed below.

An example from the contentions that were filed can be found at:
http://foe.org/sites/default/files/SLOMFP_Fukushima_Contention_TO_BE_FILED_8-11-11.pdf
 
 
 
 
The supporting technical declaration can be found at:
http://foe.org/sites/default/files/Makhijani_Declaration_for_new_Fukushima_Contention_with_CV_8-8-11.pdf
 

The 26 Groups filing contentions include:

Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions (Georgia WAND)

Savannah Riverkeeper



Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

Beyond Nuclear

Bellefonte Efficiency and Sustainability Team

Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League

Center for a Sustainable Coast

Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario

Don’t Waste Michigan

Ecology Party of Florida

Friends of the Coast

Friends of the Earth

Green Party of Ohio

National Parks Conservation Association

NC WARN

New England Coalition

NIRS Southeast

People’s Alliance for Clean Energy

Public Citizen

Reduction Network in COL

Riverkeeper Inc

San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace

Seacoast Anti-Pollution League

SEED Coalition

Sierra Club (Michigan Chapter)

Sierra Club of New Hampshire

For more information contact:
Nick Berning
202-222-0748
nberning@foe.org
or
Leslie Anderson
703-276-3256
landerson@hastingsgroup.com
 
 
NCR Info/photos of the Alvin Ward Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant
http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/operating/licensing/renewal/applications/vogtle.html
 
Plant Vogtle Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vogtle_Electric_Generating_Plant
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Vogtle_NPP.jpg
 
Plant Vogtle website:
http://www.southerncompany.com/nuclearenergy/vogtle.aspx
 
News story about opposition to actions involving Plant Vogtle:
http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/latest/lat_500265.shtml
 
Environmental Racism: Georgia Nukes Selectively Penalize Black Communities
By Black Agenda Report (BAR) Managing Editor Bruce A. Dixon
http://www.blackagendareport.com/content/obamas-georgia-nukes-selectively-penalize-black-communities-environmental-racism
 
Video of Annie Laura Stephens, a resident of rural Waynesboro, Ga., describing the impact of Plant Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant on her community:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qi1oNz-2iPw
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About TerenceDicks

A three-decade community activist for the Augusta, Georgia area, Rev. Terence A. Dicks is very concerned about civil rights, the needs of inner city and moderate and low-income children, fair civil legal representation for low-income and minorities, and many other issues. Terence has fought for civil representation for the low and moderate income involving cases like domestic violence and landlord disputes. In March 2015, Terence was sworn in for a second term to represent the Richmond County Democratic Party on the Richmond County Board of Elections. Rev. Terence Dicks is "widely-acknowledged for standing up for the rights of the powerless in his community and throughout Georgia," stated a press release on the GeorgiaAdvocates.org website when he was elected chair of the Augusta Human Relations Commission in July 2005. In 1986, Mr. Dicks was co-coordinator of the Mr. James Brown Appreciation Day in Augusta – the first time the town and its people earnestly expressed love and respect to the late great Godfather of Soul. About 5,000 people attended the event on the banks of the Savannah River including Mr. Robert Johnson (founder of Jet Magazine and much more), Mr. Greg Gumbel (who did story on BET), and Mr. Eldrin Bell (then asst. police chief of Atlanta). Along with Terence, the other co-coordinator was his lifelong friend and classmate Mr. Greg Peterson, an investigative journalist and outdoor environment reporter who started his career in Augusta and now lives in Ishpeming, MI in the Upper Peninsula near Lake Superior. The event broke the ice and led months later to the first concert Mr. Brown had ever performed in Augusta – ironically in the civic center that now bears his name (the renaming took another 20 years). Music Industry legends Casey Kasem and Dick Clark recorded radio PSAs to promote the free event. Mayor Charles DeVaney – a fan of Mr. Brown – prevented the celebration from being cancelled at the last minute by waiving the “mandatory” insurance requirements. Mr. Brown and Mr. DeVaney both died unexpectedly a month apart. We continue to love and honor the late great Mr. James Brown, who nearly single-handedly quelled Augusta's race riots and prevent further rioting in the 60, 70s. The "Hardest-Working Man in Show Business" Mr. James Brown made Terence Dicks the manager of his first-ever concert in Augusta, GA - about 6 months after the 1986 James Brown Appreciation Day. The concert was held on Saturday, December 27, 1986 at the civic center named in the godfather of Soul’s honor some 20 years later. Terence was the concert manager, producer and promoter. Tickets were only $15 ensuring all Augustans could afford to attend and the first 500 children under the age of 12 were admitted free in accordance with Mr. Brown’s wishes. Among those performing were Mr. Wilson Pickett, John Marshall, Buzz Clifford and Sequence 8. “Claiming A Street Named King” is an initiative Mr. Dicks started during tenure as chair of Georgia Clients Council. The project is about “taking back the street in by building businesses and homes on the crime-ridden abandoned boulevards that bear the name of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” However the project also has a wider scope. Dicks said the project would welcome claiming back streets named after other civil rights leaders and activists from all backgrounds. For example, the project would welcome groups or persons who want to revitalize streets named for late singer James Brown, the late Coretta Scott King, Muhammad Ali, Jesse Jackson, Grace Lee Boggs, Cesar Chavez and others. “All of these community leaders have messages of hope and accomplishment,” said Dicks, who hopes to hear from the centers, foundations and projects of these community leaders. “People can identify with their day to day struggles,” he said. “Above all they cared about the community they came from,” Dicks said. “They all have made a historic difference.” Reclaiming the streets and heritage of these civic leaders can reinvigorate “economic development and economic empowerment” in each community that honors their work. Rev. Dicks hopes to help others “improve the condition of boulevards named after Martin Luther King, Jr. across Georgia” and the nation. Author Jonathon Tilove “wrote the book that inspired me” entitled "Along Martin Luther King: Travels on Black America's Main Street.” Mr. Dicks hopes those interested will message him thru WordPress/Twitter/Facebook. The project is supported by East Carolina University Professor Derek H. Alderman. “Dr. Alderman is a geographer who has helped us to work on a plan for the redevelopment of the Martin Luther King Jr. boulevards,” Dicks said. “There was a lot of hope around those streets and what he did for me is he reminded me of why we name those streets for Martin Luther King, Jr.," he said. "We are heading into the second or third generation who doesn’t know about Dr. King and his achievements." “The generation that starts it doesn’t have to be the generation who built it,” he said. “We have to keep Dr. King’s work alive – keep it relevant and cogent.” Terence is a longtime member (2004-present) of the Augusta Progressive Religious Coalition. The coalition includes Christians, Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Hindus, Unitarian Universalists, pagans, and local Yoruba, who practice folk religion from West Africa. Among the many positive aspects of the coalition, Dicks developed a relationship with Omar Neal, who has been the Mayor of Tuskegee, Alabama since Nov. 3, 2008. Mr. Omar Neal was the keynote speaker of the 2011 Martin Luther King Day celebration organized by the Augusta Progressive Religious Coalition on Mon., Jan, 24, 2011 at the Tabernacle Baptist Church in Augusta. After being an independent voter for two decades, Terence joined the Richmond County Democratic Party (RCDP) in 2002. He joined the Democratic Committee of Richmond County that “has jurisdiction over Democratic Party affairs in Richmond County” and a “purpose is to help select and elect Democratic Party Candidates to office” and whose platform includes “those of the Democratic Party of Georgia.” Terence has served as chair of the RCDP Political Action Committee (PAC) and performed duties that included community outreach. Mr. Dicks is member of the Richmond County State Committee (2011-2014) representing the 12th Congressional District. He served for six years (2002-2008) as state chair of the Georgia Clients Council plus served on the council board for eight years (2000-2008). For nearly a decade, Terence has been a board member (2002-present) of Georgia Legal Services Program and served (2005-2010) on the organization’s Georgia Committee on Civil Justice and is on the state bar president advisory committee. The mission of Georgia Legal Services Program is “to provide access to justice and opportunities out of poverty for low-income Georgians.” In 2007, Mr. Dicks founded the non-profit Georgia Center for Children and Education Inc. and serves as the volunteer executive director. The goal of the organization is encouraging parent involvement in education and to support community involvement in public schools. Originally the Center for Children and Education, the project was founded 1997 by Philadelphia, PA attorney Baruch Kintisch, a former staff attorney for Georgia Legal Services After exhaustive planning, Terence helped co-write and secure a $255,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in the spring of 2008 that is being administered by Paine College for the "New Tools, New Visions 2 Augusta" Project and he serves on the project steering committee. Rev. Dicks is a longtime member of the International Leadership Association (2001-present). Mr. Dicks serves as state of Georgia Coordinator (2008-present) for the Progressive Democrats of America (PDA). He joined the national PDA in 2007. For over a decade (1998-2009), Terence served on the board of the Augusta Human Relations Commission including two-terms as chair, three terms as vice-chair. Terence served as a board member (1994-1996) and the second vice president of the Augusta Branch of the NAACP including chair of the fair housing committee. Terence graduated from Westside High School in 1980 during which time he was a member of the WJBF TV-6 Junior Achievement Company that involved filming, editing, producing and hosting 30-minute issue-oriented public service programs that aired on weekends with student-sold commercials. Terence did a summer internship in 1980 – just after graduating from high school – at the Medical College of Georgia Television Production and was taught by people who include the late TV Director Mr. Armond “Brother” Jackson , Jr. - a longtime TV production expert in Augusta including at WRDW TV-12 and WJBF TV-6. During high school and for about 7 years afterward, Terence was a radio announcer at several Augusta radio stations including disc jockey (when records were vinyl 45s), sports, features, talk show and more. The stations included WBIA and WCKJ. Terence worked in production at WAGT-TV with Mr. Frank Crotts including being a live switcher (punching proper buttons to keep shows going and inserting commercials). He also worked at several Augusta restaurants as a chef and bartender.
This entry was posted in Annie Laura Stephens, anti-war, Atlanta, atom, atomic energy, Atomic Energy Act, atomic energy plants, atomic reactor, atomic reactors, Augusta, Bellefonte Efficiency and Sustainability Team, Beyond Nuclear, Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, Bobbi Paul, Center for a Sustainable Coast, Citizens Environment Alliance of Southwestern Ontario, Comanche Peak, Diablo Canyon, Don’t Waste Michigan, Dr. Arjun Makhijani, Ecology Party of Florida, Enter your zip code here, environment, environmental, Environmental Racism, Fermi, Friends of the Coast, Friends of the Earth, Fukushima, Georgia, Georgia Power Company, Georgia WAND, Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions, Green Party of Ohio, health, Indian Point, Japan, Japan nuclear power disaster, Japan tsunami, Levy, National Environmental Policy Act, National Parks Conservation Association, NC WARN, New England Coalition, NIRS Southeast, North Anna, NRC, nuclear bombs, nuclear plants, nuclear power, nuclear power Plant Vogtle, nuclear reactor, Nuclear Reactor Licensing, Nuclear Reactor Relicensing, nuclear reactors, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, peace, People’s Alliance for Clean Energy, Phillip Musegaas, Public Citizen, Reduction Network in COL, Riverkeeper Inc., San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace, Savannah River, Savannah River Plant, Savannah Riverkeeper, Seabrook, Seacoast Anti-Pollution League, SEED Coalition, Shearon Harris, Sierra Club Michigan Chapter, Sierra Club of New Hampshire, South Texas, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Summer, Terence Dicks, Turkey Point, U.S. Atomic Energy Act, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. National Environmental Policy Act, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, USDOE, Vogtle, W.S. Lee, war, Watts Bar, Waynesboro and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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