Sierra Club Statement on Abandonment of Nuclear Plant in South Carolina

SCE&G, and its parent company, SCANA, have just announced that they are abandoning the V.C. Summer Nuclear Plant in South Carolina. The plant has long been an expensive boondoggle aimed at furthering a dangerous project threatening the health and safety of the human and natural environment.

In Response, Sierra Club South Carolina Chapter Chair Chris Hall
released the following statement:

“This plant was an expensive and dangerous boondoggle from the very beginning. The fact that this plant is being abandoned is also the latest example of exactly why and how the nuclear industry is failing: it’s too costly and too risky. That is why the Sierra Club has led this fight for decades along with other organizations, including Friends of the Earth.

“Although nuclear plants have been in operation for less than 60 years, we now have seen three serious disasters. Tragically, it took a horrific disaster in Japan to remind the world that none of the fundamental problems with nuclear power have ever been addressed.

“From transportation, to storage, to waste that remains lethal for more than 100,000 years, nuclear plants pose numerous threats to our families and our communities. Oil spills, smog, nuclear waste and meltdowns are all dangerous threats to our families from fossil fuels and nuclear plants that we can avoid by moving toward a 100% clean energy economy. Now, South Carolina has an opportunity to invest in real clean energy solutions like solar, wind and aggressive energy efficiency to offset the undue burden to South Carolina ratepayers who have been fleeced into subsidizing this boondoggle for years with some of the most exorbitantly high bills throughout the nation.

“This is a boondoggle that should never have even gotten started. Now that it has failed, it is essential that these companies ensure a just transition for the workers and communities who will be impacted by this epic collapse.

“Most importantly, we should take this opportunity to learn from the mistakes of these plants and move forward toward a modern and clean 21st century economy that looks out for ratepayers and helps conserve the environment. In South Carolina, we can start by rebating ratepayers; amending the state Base Load Review Act to prevent a disaster of a project like this from happening again; passing legislation such as South Carolina Senate bill S.44 to provide appropriate tax incentives for large-scale solar, and taking a hard look at at our state’s regulatory structure so that we’re looking out for South Carolinians – and not energy executives and utilities – first. ”

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