Taking the R out of the NRC

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Just when you thought nuclear power plants were headed the way of the dinosaur, last month the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission doled out its first-ever 20-year extension on a beleaguered Maryland plant’s operating license, according to GRIST MAGAZINE.

Activists fear that the move could mean operating extensions for dozens of other nuclear plants across the country. At least 27 other plants are likely to seek similar extensions by 2003. Public Citizen and the National Whistleblower Center claim the NRC quietly changed the license-renewal process to make it more difficult for the public to weigh in with questions about the Maryland plant’s safety and with complaints about the nuclear waste piling up around it.

The National Whistleblower Center filed suit against the NRC in federal appeals court about the change in the review process, and the court ruled in their favor. But the decision was thrown out, and while the case awaited a new hearing, the NRC went ahead with the Maryland plant’s renewal.

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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