In the wake of the recent tragedy in Japan and the worldwide focus on the future of nuclear power, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater has called together key legislative leaders, environmental experts, and regional stakeholders for a solutions-oriented working sail aboard the iconic environmental flagship Clearwater, sailing from King Marine in Verplanck, NY, Wednesday, April 6, from 10 am to 1 pm. A press conference will take place at 1pm at the marina immediately after the sloop returns to the dock.
Onboard, participants will explore new approaches to our energy future in the shadows of Indian Point nuclear power plant on the Hudson River and envision ways to put an end to the region’s reliance on damaging and dangerous sources of power. Discussions will address the need to close Indian Point nuclear facility and explore ideas for energy transition and actively bringing sustainable energy infrastructure into the Hudson Valley.
Pete Seeger led the nation in a dialog, which brought about the 1973 Clean Water Act. Now Clearwater seeks to lead the nation’s dialog on sustainable solutions to replace nuclear power. In the tradition of the Clean Water Act, Clearwater seeks to activate the community on this issue in a way that will positively affect generations to come. “By bringing together a spectrum of expertise along with stakeholders to explore how to power New York’s future, we hope to create a powerful discourse on clean energy strategies to shift the continuum from our dependence on nuclear and fossil fuels, to clean, reliable, renewable sources,” said Manna Jo Greene, Environmental Activism Director for Clearwater.
Former Congressman John Hall, who will join participants for the Power Sail, commented that, “As we watch Japan, a technologically advanced society, try to deal with cascading failures at an aging nuclear complex which is still leaking unknown amounts of radioactive poisons into the air, water and soil, we can’t help but worry about our own aging nuclear complex. Indian Point has had many unplanned shutdowns due to obstruction of the cooling systems, transformer explosions, and other predictable problems at a plant, which is approaching its design lifespan. With 8 percent of the US population living inside a 50-mile radius of Indian Point, the NRC has an obligation to consider this as a unique, dangerous situation. No license application has ever been refused by the NRC. IP is their chance to show that they are not just a rubber stamp.”
Recent developments in the nuclear power debate have spurred increased awareness of the potential dangers of nuclear power and the storage of spent radioactive waste; Clearwater hopes that through a collaborative process, stakeholders in the region will build a platform for a unified front as a green energy solutions constituency.
“We cannot afford the nuclear option. We are finally at a tipping point in the history of nuclear power and must move forward in advancing a renewable energy agenda. We now have the chance to make that happen through clean energy technology, that not only grows the economy, but also makes New York a cleaner, healthier, safer and ultimately a more prosperous place to live,” said Jeff Rumpf, Executive Director of Clearwater.
At the 1 pm press conference, leaders will review the outcomes of the onboard conversations to publicly show their support for a nuclear power-free, healthier environment with green renewable energy solutions as the foundation for a job-creating green economy. Plans for a technical conference, a continuation of this discourse and taking place April 25, will also be announced.