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DOZENS OF GEORGIA RESIDENTS LIVING NEAR VOGTLE SITE WILL TRAVEL TO DC, WITNESS HEARING CHALLENGING SAFETY OF NEW REACTORS

NEWS MEDIA ADVISORY AND DAYBOOK ITEM for November 19, 2012

In the wake of Sandy disaster, US Court of Appeals to hear that NRC violated federal law by failing to fully consider risk of Fukushima-like catastrophe in Vogtle reactor licensing

ATLANTA- Less than two weeks after Tropical Storm Sandy devastated the East Coast of the United States and caused several nuclear reactor shutdowns, dozens of residents living in the vicinity of the Vogtle reactor site near Waynesboro, Georgia will board a bus and ride all night to be present in the DC Court of appeals Monday to witness oral arguments in a case challenging the safety of two new nuclear reactors under construction at Vogtle.

Attorneys representing Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions (Georgia WAND), and eight other national and regional organizations will argue on Monday (November 19), that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission violated federal law when it issued a license for two proposed new reactors at the Vogtle nuclear power plant near Waynesboro, Georgia without fully taking into account the potential for a Fukushima-like disaster.

The oral arguments before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League v. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission will take place at 9:30 a.m. Monday in the fifth floor court room.

About 55 members of Georgia WAND and Concerned Citizens of Shell Bluff who live in the small communities that lie close to the existing and proposed Vogtle reactors will travel all night by bus to hear the argument and pack the courtroom.

“These judges will be faced with the residents most impacted by their decision," Bobbie Paul, Georgia WAND Executive Director said. "We hope it will help them rule on the side of safety and environmental justice.”

The groups contend that before licensing the reactors or approving the underlying “AP1000” reactor design, the NRC should have supplemented the Environmental Impact Statement for the reactors to address the risk of a catastrophic accident such as the one that occurred at the six-reactor Fukushima Daiichi complex in Japan in the spring of 2011.

In addition to Georgia Women’s Action for New Directions, the groups bringing the appeal include: Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, Friends of the Earth, Nuclear Information and Resource Service, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Citizens Allied for Safe Energy, Center for a Sustainable Coast, NC WARN, and Nuclear Watch South.

WHO:
Diane Curran, attorney, Harmon, Curran, Spielberg & Eisenberg, L.L.P. In addition to Curran, the groups are also represented by Mindy Goldstein, director of the Turner Environmental Law Clinic, Emory University Law School, and John Runkle, an environmental attorney in Chapel Hill, NC.

WHEN:         
Monday, November 19, 2012.

TIME:
9:30 a.m. EST.

WHERE:
U.S. Courthouse, 3rd and Constitution Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C., 5th floor.

MEDIA CONTACT: Ailis Aaron Wolf, 703-276-3265 or aawolf@hastingsgroup.com, Courtney Hanson, 308-631-8543 or courtney@georgiawand.org

 

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