Millstone News

State Declares Millstone “At Risk of Closing” – Coalition Declares Millstone “At Risk of Not Closing”

As of Monday, November 19, 2018, Millstone Unit 2 has been on an unplanned shutdown for 16 days because of serious issues of malfunction of critical safety equipment inside the nuclear reactor core.

In fact, it has been shut down for most of the past two months since a scheduled 37-day refueling outage commencing on September 27.

The company was trying to bring the unit from zero power to 100% power incrementally for several days so it could stem its hemorrhaging losses due to the shutdown and inability to generate and sell electricity.

The power level never rose about 19% and the unit was forced to shut down on November 3. Since then it has generated no electricity.

Millstone Unit 2 is a distressed nuclear reactor. It needs to be shut down now permanently because of the continuing great risk it poses to the public health and safety.

The NRC has imposed a secrecy embargo on information about why Millstone Unit 2, now 43 years old, is continuing in the lengthy, expensive unplanned shutdown.

Likewise, the State of Connecticut has released no information about the potentially perilous conditions at Millstone Unit 2. In response to the Coalition’s November 16, 2018 FOI request for information, DEEP released a terse statement that it may be two to three months before it responds.

Unmentioned is the prolonged maintenance/safety-related Unit 2 shutdown in the blitz of news media coverage of the state’s issuance of its “draft” decision released on November 16, 2018, based on “confidential” information withheld from the public, that it deems Millstone “at risk” of closure because it can’t keep up with costs of maintenance and security and maintain the level of profitability it would like. See, e.g.,”PURA Draft Decision Deems Millstone ‘At Risk’”

This “draft” decision opens the door to snuffing the prospects of conversion to truly green and clean technologies becoming widespread elsewhere as nuclear power plants close before their licenses expire.

Bottom Line: Declaring Millstone green and clean although unprofitable, the state is forcing Connecticut residents to forego a necessary transition to safe, secure, sustainable green energy and instead prop up this dangerous, failing, aged technology. Millstone has had a 48-year run of scandal – recall lost high-level nuclear fuel rods, firing of whistleblowers, federal felony charges for lying about its environmental releases of poisons to the Long Island Sound, mandatory three-year shutdown by the NRC and continuous ongoing spewing of toxic, carcinogenic radioactive waste byproducts, including plutonium, to our air and water.

Millstone News

Millstone Unit 2 Still Shut Down (11/16/18)

As of Friday, November 16, 2018, Millstone Unit 2 is still shut down, having failed to power up above 19% capacity following a 37-day planned refueling outage that began on September 27.

For the 13th day since ascending to 19% power on November 3, Unit 2 has been shut down, generating nuclear waste but no nuclear power.

During the refueling outage, Dominion replaced the trouble-plagued unit’s in-core detectors which are located within the nuclear reactor core and are critical to measure and map power levels.

The NRC told the New London Day that Unit 2 was powering up as it emerged from the outage “when it was determined the detectors were not operating properly and a shutdown was necessary.”

Unit 2 had reached 19 per cent power on November 3 when the problem was identified.

The Day reported:
“[NRC spokesman Neil] Sheehan and NRC resident inspectors assigned to Millstone will follow up on Dominion Energy’s troubleshooting efforts and repairs and will track plans to restart the unit.”