Letters To The Editor
A new report released at this week’s press conference on health threats of the Indian Point nuclear reactors received much attention. It was also roundly criticized by New York Affordable Reliable Electricity Alliance (NYAREA), a group funded by the nuclear industry that has stated Indian Point is “safe” and nuclear power is “clean.”
But the pro-nuclear group only has slogans and opinions, while our research organization has carefully assembled many facts on nuclear safety (published in 23 medical journal articles) that raise troubling questions. In addition to the obvious threat of a catastrophic meltdown, Indian Point may have actually harmed local citizens with toxic radioactivity.
Official statistics show that
In addition, high cancer rates exist in Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, and Orange Counties, where nearly all residents live within 20 miles of Indian Point. Current rates are especially high for childhood cancer (22% above the U.S.) and thyroid cancer (70% above the U.S.), both of which are sensitive to radiation.
The current proposal to keep Indian Point in operation for 20 more years should be based on factual evidence, not on empty slogans. If NYAREA and the nuclear industry truly care about protecting people, it will cease the name-calling and take the issue seriously.
Joseph J. Mangano MPH MBA is Executive Director of the Radiation and Public Health Project, a research and education group based in New York.