Officials are drastically accelerating a plan to dump more radioactive waste linked to cancer into the Hudson River. This could be very bad for Hudson Valley residents.

Holtec International recently announced plans to dump about one million gallons of radioactive wastewater into the Hudson River this summer.

1 Million Gallons Of Radioactive Waste Likely Dumped Into Hudson River In New York

Indian Point
Stephen Chernin/Getty Images

Holtec International is in charge of decommissioning the Indian Point nuclear facility in Westhcester County.

At a hearing on Feb. 2, Holtec confirmed it will resume discharging radioactive wastewater into the Hudson River from a spent fuel pool at the Indian Point nuclear power plant in August.

Holtec said dumping the radioactive waste into the Hudson River is the company's "best option."

Dangerous Plan To Dump Radioactive Waste Into Hudson River Accelerated

Hudson River Clean Up
Getty Images

This week, Hotlec announced plans to dump the waste into the river starting in May.

“We at the Board of Legislators are outraged at the announcement yesterday by Holtec International that they are moving forward with dumping wastewater into the Hudson River. Then, to add insult to injury, Holtec shortened the timeframe for eliminating the waste from August to May. The decision not to listen to the public’s outcry over the risks to life, but also the fact that they moved up the schedule, prove what a bad actor Holtec truly is," the Westchester County Board of Legislators states.

The Indian Point Power Plant closed down around late April 2021. The 2,000-megawatt nuclear power plant, located 24 miles north of New York City, had presented numerous threats to the safety of over 19 million people who live or work in the New York metropolitan area and its environmental health, officials say.

"Discharging the wastewater in May will occur just as thousands of New Yorkers are gearing up to swim, fish, paddle and boat in the Hudson, and it could expose the population of striped bass and herring as it will coincide with the spawning of these and other fish in the vicinity of the plant," Riverkeeper states.

Waste Linked To Cancer

Photo by Kilian Karger on Unsplash
Photo by Kilian Karger on Unsplash

Riverkeeper is one of many against this plan saying some of the radioactive waste is linked to cancer.

"Riverkeeper is calling for a halt to the discharges and a means of storing the contaminated water safely in tanks on the site while safer disposal methods are evaluated. It’s time to draw the line against using the Hudson as a dumping ground for tritium, a radioactive isotope found in the wastewater. Ingestion of tritium is linked to cancer, and children and pregnant women are most vulnerable," Riverkeeper stated.

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New York Lawmaker Want To Save Hudson River

NY Senate
NY Senate

New York state Sen. Peter Harckham (D, 40th Senate District) has introduced a bill that would prohibit the discharge of any radiological agent into any body of water located in New York State.

"After decades of tremendous efforts to clean up the Hudson River, the idea of anyone dumping radioactive water into this estuary, the economic lifeblood of our region, is simply outrageous,” Harckham stated. “No person, corporation or government has the right to recklessly pollute New York State’s waters, and the mere idea that this is being contemplated is troubling. While the decommissioning of a nuclear power plant is a complex issue, there can be no rationale for releasing radioactive waste into the Hudson.”

Hudson Valley officials believe Holtec is speeding up its timeframe because the opposition is growing, like Harchham's bill.

“This is an affront to the people who love the Hudson but fear for their health and the damage tritium discharges can bring to the river and to their communities,” President of Riverkeeper Tracy Brown said. “We were hoping to work in good faith with Holtec to find an appropriate solution for disposal of the tritiated water, but it seems their hurry to make profit takes precedence over the people and health of the river.”

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Concerned residents will have a chance to speak out against the plan at a board meeting on April 27th.

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