VY sale to NorthStar needs to examine serious, long-term consequences

BRATTLEBORO — Since the inception of the environmental movement with Rachel Carson's book Silent Spring, there has been a concerted effort on the part of special-interest groups and related corporations to discredit and intimidate environmental and watchdog groups like the New England Coalition - and to mislead the public by disseminating false information through advertising campaigns and other means.

So let's get a few facts straight about the sale of Vermont Yankee to NorthStar.

NorthStar as a company was established in November of 2016, and the company's filings show no income for that year. NorthStar has shown very little in the way of tangible assets.

Given NorthStar has no experience in decommissioning full-scale commercial nuclear power plants, it is highly likely that unforeseen problems --and expensive problems - will arise.

When this happens and NorthStar is unable to deal with it, who will be liable? And how will that affect the quality of the handling of the decommissioning?

Paul Hawken, author of The Ecology of Commerce, has written and taught extensively about sustainable business practices and the impact of business upon living systems. At VY, we are talking about the storage of radioactive waste over a watershed on the river for tens of thousands of years. When ideas of sustainability and responsible stewardship are factored into this equation, a sale to NorthStar would be dangerous and extremely shortsighted if it fails to examine fully the many serious and long-term consequences.

The New England Coalition wants what everyone wants - a good, clean, best-practices decommissioning of Vermont Yankee. The dispute is largely in how we get there.

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