Washington, D.C. (July 28) - Today, Congressman Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), the top Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee and a senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, issued the following statement in response to news that a majority of Commissioners at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has voted to reject Chairman Greg Jaczko’s proposal to act within 90 days on the recommendations of the NRC's Near Term Task Force reviewing Commission processes and regulations in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns. Instead, Commissioners William Magwood, William Ostendorff, and Kristine Svinicki have voted to direct the NRC staff to endlessly study the NRC staff’s own report before they will consider the recommendations made by the very same NRC staff.
“Commissioners Ostendorff, Magwood and Svinicki have made it all too clear that they believe that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission stands for “No Recommendations Considered,” said Rep. Markey. “They have done this country a tremendous disservice in their collective votes to ensure that the NRC will not lead efforts to ensure the safety of the nuclear industry sector in this country, but will instead actively aid and abet the nuclear industry’s dilatory efforts to ignore, perhaps indefinitely, the recommendations of the Commission’s expert and dedicated staff.”
Last week, Rep. Markey released a letter calling on Commissioners Svinicki and Magwood to reverse their earlier votes to stall action on the Fukushima Task Force recommendations. Today, Commissioner Ostendorff’s vote was released, and with a 3-vote majority, it is now clear that the NRC will not act quickly to even vote on, let alone adopt, the safety upgrades recommended by some of the Commission’s most senior technical staff.