Our 2013 Campaign
STOP Entergy’s Pollution of Cape Cod Bay from Pilgrim Nuclear
Entergy Corporation owns and operates the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station located on the Bay in Plymouth. Every day, Entergy pollutes the environment by dumping waste into Cape Cod Bay, our groundwater and the air.
Cape Cod Bay Pollution and Destruction of Marine Life
Pilgrim uses an outdated, once-through cooling water system that takes over a half-billion gallons of sea water per day from Cape Cod Bay to make electricity. The cooling system discharges large quantities of heated waste water back to the source, impacting protected species and habitats. Pilgrim’s thermal plume covers nearly 5 miles of the Bay. Pilgrim’s cooling system also has direct impacts on marine life in the Bay, killing billions of fish, shellfish and plankton every year. Read more on the Cape Cod Bay Pollution page.
Pilgrim’s “permit to pollute” with this cooling system, which is issued by state and federal governments, expired 17 years ago. Read more on the Clean Water Act Law page.
Entergy’s Pilgrim nuclear power station also pollutes the Plymouth-Carver Sole Source Aquifer — the drinking water supply for the region. Pilgrim leaks radioactive tritium, likely from underground pipes and other sources, into the groundwater. These are unregulated, non-permitted leaks. The state Department of Public Health (DPH) is charged with preventing this pollution and should be requiring Entergy to clean it up. However, the DPH is not doing everything it can.
Entergy also pollutes the aquifer by directly discharging pollutants into the ground from its on-site wastewater treatment plant. Entergy continues to miss deadlines for upgrading this treatment plant, and the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) keeps giving the company extensions. In the meantime, Entergy continues to discharge pollutants like nitrogen, chlorides, total suspended solids and other chemicals under a “permit” from DEP that has limits set higher than they should be. Read more on the Groundwater Pollution page.
The groundwater flow direction at Pilgrim is toward Cape Cod Bay. So, the radioactive tritium and the waste from the so-called “treatment plant” enters the Bay–and has been since Pilgrim started operating.
Nuclear Waste Storage
Entergy is building a high-level nuclear waste dump at Pilgrim. Over 40 “nuclear dumpsters” will be located 100 yards from Cape Cod Bay, and will be there for hundreds to thousands of years. As it currently stands, the nuclear waste storage facility is not being done in the safest way possible – in terms of the environment, public health and the economic well-being of the town. Entergy should be required to obtain special permit under Plymouth zoning laws, so that the Town can impose certain conditions on the project. Plymouth officials need to use their authority to ensure Pilgrim’s nuclear waste facility is designed, built and operated under the highest of standards. Read more on the Nuclear Waste in Plymouth page.