Governor Cuomo has opposed the existence of the two nuclear reactors at Indian Point for years, and he recently reiterated his determination to block a renewal of their licenses in 2013 and 2015 respectively. They are, after all, situated in a densely populated area 20 million people live within a 50-mile radius which means that, in the unlikely event of a terrorist attack or a powerful earthquake or some other catastrophic failure, we’ll all turn into radioactive zombies.
But a new report commissioned by New York City also reminds everyone that, when Indian Point isn’t turning everyone into zombies, it’s providing us with cheap, clean power, and lots of it. The report concludes that shutting down the reactors would lead to an electricity shortfall while other power sources are being developed, putting the city at greater risk for brownouts. When the power from the reactors are replaced a few years from now by dirtier fossil-fuel plants, carbon emissions in the city could increase by up to 15 percent, and our electricity bills would rise by 5 to 10 percent. Sounds like a lose-lose situation. Which reminds us, whatever happened to those skyscraper windmills?
Dirtier Air and Higher Costs Possible if Indian Point Closes, Report Says [NYT]