The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) were in Plymouth last Thursday, July 21, to hold a public hearing on Pilgrim’s draft “NPDES” permit. This permit is required under the Clean Water Act for companies that use water and discharge pollutants into a state water source (in Pilgrim’s case, Cape Cod Bay). NPDES permits are supposed to be updated every 5 years, but in Pilgrim’s case, this is the first time regulators have revised Pilgrim’s permit since 1994. After several years of public pressure, EPA and MassDEP have finally issued a draft, updated permit for Pilgrim. While this is good news, there are also many concerns with the new permit – many of these concerns were voiced at the hearing Thursday night by environmental organizations and concerned residents from coastal communities along Cape Cod Bay.

To learn more about the issues raised at the hearing, read the Cape Cod Times article: EPA’s Oversight of Pilgrim Questioned and WATD’s article: Area Residents Sound Off at Public Hearing on Pilgrim Nuclear.

EPA Hearing_July 21 2016

The crowd listens to EPA explain the new draft NPDES permit for Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station during a presentation at the Plymouth Public Library on July 21, 2016.

The deadline for written comments was 7/25/2016. Read our comments letter to EPA, endorsed by several local groups >>

The final permit will likely be issued in December 2016 or January 2017. We hope, and expect, that EPA will use the input provided by concerned groups and individuals at the hearing and in written comments to inform its decisions for drafting the final permit.

Additional comment letters submitted to EPA:

  • Cape Downwinders LETTER
  • Pilgrim Watch LETTER
  • Association to Preserve Cape Cod LETTER
  • Center for Coastal Studies LETTER
  • Cape Cod Commercial Fisherman’s Alliance LETTER
  • Cape Cod National Seashore Advisory Commission LETTER