SEPTEMBER 23, 2013
Contact: Nancy Burton Tel. 203-938-3952 NancyBurtonCT@aol.com
Dominion’s Millstone Nuclear Power Station in Waterford sucks in 1.3 million gallons of water per minute from the Long Island Sound to cool its nuclear reactors. That’s 6.8 trillion gallons per year.
The water is discharged to the Sound laced with traces of toxic and radioactive waste byproducts – and it’s hot. Millstone operations continuously spew out a thermal plume, estimated at 15 billion BTUs of heat every hour.
Today the Connecticut Coalition Against Millstone proposed the state impose an annual $336 million water tax on Millstone for its use, pollution and degradation of the public waters of the state – the Long Island Sound.
“For 43 years, since Millstone 1 went online in 1970, Millstone’s owners and operators have enjoyed a free ride, treating our public waters like a personal toxic waste lagoon,” said Nancy Burton, the Coalition’s director. “It’s time for the public to demand Dominion assume financial responsibility for its pollution and heating of our precious natural resource.”
The Coalition calculated that if Millstone had to purchase the water it uses for cooling from a private water utility, such as Connecticut Water Company, which charges its customers $4.93 per 1,000 gallons of water usage, it would be liable for $3.369 trillion annually. Over the 43 years of plant operations, that would amount to $144.9 trillion.
“We call on the state to impose a fair, just and equitable water tax of $336 million annually,” Burton said.
Millstone could avoid a water tax by converting to a closed cooling system, Burton said. A 1993 study by Northeast Utilities, Millstone’s prior owner, found that a closed cooling system, which would recirculate water from an onsite pool, was prudent, feasible and environmentally far less destructive than the once-through system now in use.