As reported on primetime news this week, concerned citizens from the Cape area made a trip to the state house on March 10 to again urge Governor Patrick to call on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to shut down the Pilgrim power plant in Plymouth.

Pilgrim has been plagued by numerous problems requiring four unexpected shutdowns and slowdowns in the past year and a serious radioactive tritium leak has been revealed. The 42 year old Pilgrim plant has been placed on a short list of the nation’s nine worst performers. Our senator, Dan Wolf, is adamantly advocating for the decommission of this plant and a transition to alternate energy sources. The state currently gets 13 per cent of total energy power from Pilgrim and is already committed to producing more than this amount from greener sources.

An additional cause for concern is the fact that there is no evacuation plan in place for Martha’s Vineyard in the event of an accident and/or release of radiation. The director of MEMA, Kurt Schwarz, has unequivocally stated that an emergency evacuation off the Cape would be an impossibility. Residents here would “shelter in place” and be slowly relocated. Meanwhile, we would be sickened and our homes would become uninhabitable.

Because of the extreme danger posed to the Cape and Islands should an accident occur at the aging, failing Pilgrim power plant, concerned people are working to place a full page ad in the Sunday Cape Cod Times asking to close Pilgrim now. If you would like to contribute to the placement of this ad, please send your name (written clearly), your town and $10 to: Down Cape Downwinders, Susan Smith, Box 98, Wellfleet, MA 02667. Checks should be made out to “Down Cape Downwinders.”

For questions and further information, please contact Cynthia Aguilar (on the Vineyard) at 508-693-6078.

At town elections this spring, voters in most Island towns will be able to register their support or opposition on a non-binding resolution to close the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant. All 15 towns on the Cape voted by a landslide to support this resolution in 2013.

Ann Rosenkranz
West Tisbury