URGENT, TIME SENSITIVE, DELIVER IMMEDIATELY — Thomas Jefferson on nuclear power in Illinois
———- Forwarded message ———
From: David Kraft <[email protected]>
Date: Wed, Nov 8, 2023 at 9:29 AM
Subject: URGENT, TIME SENSITIVE, DELIVER IMMEDIATELY — Thomas Jefferson on nuclear power in Illinois
To: David Kraft <[email protected]>
“Delay is preferable to error.”
–Thomas Jefferson to George Washington—
TO: Illinois public officials and staff
RE: nuclear power issues in Veto Session
In the final week of the Fall Veto Session, legislation – HB2473 Sen. Amendment 3 – has been introduced that deals with Illinois nuclear construction moratorium and the promotion of a next generation of nuclear power reactors (so-called “small modular nuclear reactors” – SMNRs) for Illinois.
Even if you are already an expert with deep understanding of the full implications of nuclear power and waste issues on the State’s economy and environment, Jefferson’s words to Washington should be given serious consideration.
If you are not already such an expert, then it is unlikely you will become one during the next 48 hours of a pressure-filled Veto Session, where there are many competing issues to be dealt with. And again – Jefferson’s words carry great weight.
Ostensibly, HB2473-SA3 has been crafted as an attempt to address the legitimate concerns Governor Pritzker articulated when he vetoed SB76 in the Spring Session – a bill that would have rescinded Illinois’ nuclear construction moratorium, and which “in error” advocated for “advanced” nuclear reactors. Our initial read of the proposed legislation thus far raises deep skepticism that these concerns have been adequately addressed.
Because of this it would not be prudent to rush a potentially error-filled bill into passage during the pressure cooker of the Fall Veto Session. Better to “delay” action until the Spring Session, giving both officials and their staff, AND your constituents – who, after all would be footing the bills for any such errors – time to do a deeper dive into the implications of moratorium repeal and promotion of a new generation of nuclear power in Illinois.
NEIS is putting together a list of concerns about HB2473-SA3 which we hope to provide you with by the afternoon of 11/8/23. We were not provided the actual language until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, or we would have had this available for you to consider earlier. Such is the way the Legislature conducts business.
Some initial alarm bells include:
- Concerns that yet again, the nuclear construction moratorium would not apply to SMNRs after Jan. 1, 2026 – WITHOUT any mention of how to deal with the new high-level radioactive wastes (HLRW) that would be produced by them;
- Mandating IEMA-OHS to develop a “general state policy” on nuclear power, without defining any means of public input into the process [p.13, lines 1-14];
- Mandate for an ill-defined “study” conducted by IEMA into the issue of SMNRs – WITHOUT any mandated public input other than a 30-day comment period AFTER the work of the study group was completed, and presumably their conclusions and recommendations reached. This is worrisomely close in resemblance to the “study-to-show” not unlike that conducted by former and disgraced House Speaker Michael Madigan over HR1146 to help bailout Exelon reactors a decade ago [pp.16-19];
- Language ambiguity about whether Illinois could/would actually be allowed to or be interested in permanent DISPOSAL of HLRW within the State. [p.3, lines 9-11; p.4 line 3]. References to spent-fuel “reprocessing” are also of concern, given the environmental impacts and nuclear proliferation potential of reprocessing spent fuel.
We have previously provided you and your office with detailed information and access to credible sources regarding SMNRs. These have been condensed into a 35 min. PowerPoint which we make available to you as a ZOOM recording here:
You can copy the recording information below and share with others
Please feel free to contact us with questions and concerns you have regarding either the moratorium repeal or SMNRs. We can provide you with contact to outside experts on nuclear matters as well, should you have need of that. Not to be boastful but we believe our 42 years of experience watchdogging the Illinois nuclear power and waste industry is not to be casually disregarded, and is available to you as a resource at any time you ask.
We truly believe that, were he alive today, Jefferson would be the one contacting your office, urging you use the time between now and Spring session to fully understand the implications of of HB2473-SA3, and better – educate and get the opinions of your constituents on a matter that will deeply and permanent affect their pocketbooks and the Illinois environment.
We wish you well in the conclusion of the Session.
Be well, safe travels home,
–Dave Kraft, Director, NEIS–
David A. Kraft, Director
SKYPE address: davekhamburg
NEIS is a member of EarthShare Illinois
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