1330Congressman Kucinich Is Looking After ALL of Us!
- Dec 5, 2011December 5, 2011 For Immediate ReleaseNathan.White@... (202)225-5871Kucinich: FirstEnergy Puts Profits Before Safety; NRC Allows Restart of Davis-Besse Before Completing InvestigationWASHINGTON, D.C. (December 5, 2011) -- Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today released the following statement after the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) authorized FirstEnergy to restart its Davis-Besse nuclear power plant before an investigation into widespread `cracking' could be completed."On Friday, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued a `Confirmatory Action Letter' that gave FirstEnergy permission to restart its poorly-managed Davis-Besse nuclear reactor despite the discovery of cracks in the concrete around virtually the entire circumference of the shield building that is supposed to ensure the containment of any nuclear accident. Two things are obvious from the NRC letter: 1) at this time, the NRC and FirstEnergy have no idea what the cause of the cracking is; and 2) FirstEnergy did not perform enough tests to determine the cause or the extent of the problem before it rushed to restart the reactor."The cracks were initially discovered when FirstEnergy cut a hole in the wall of the shield building to create enough room to move in the new reactor headthe second time in ten years that Davis-Besse has had to replace a reactor head allowed to corrode because of poor oversight and management. The cracks were described as 30 feet long and running along the line of the steel reinforcing bars. Subsequent tests disclosed that there is similar cracking in 15 out of the 16 `flute shoulders' of the concrete wall."The NRC letter reveals that FirstEnergy has not yet determined what the cause of the cracking is. The NRC is giving FirstEnergy until February 28, 2012 to provide the results of its `root cause evaluation.' The NRC letter also requires FirstEnergy to conduct additional `core bores' to determine the extent of the cracking in the concrete of the wall. Despite not knowing the cause of the cracking, and despite not knowing the extent of the cracking, the NRC is allowing FirstEnergy to restart the Davis-Besse reactor. And the test results, analyses and reports on which this decision has been based have not been revealed to the public."It is one thing to conceal this information from the public while the reactor is idle. It is quite another to restart the reactor without making full disclosure to the public why it thinks we should accept a nuclear power plant operating at full power with a building containing cracks of unknown origin."