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Massachusetts governor has nuclear plant concerns

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 10, 2014 at 4:09 pm •  Published: March 10, 2014

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Deval Patrick pledged on Monday to write a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, expressing concerns about the safety of the Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth.

Patrick made the promise after meeting briefly with the head of a group of Cape Cod residents seeking to shut down the plant. The governor said he shares the group's safety concerns about the plant and has expressed them both publicly and to the federal agency overseeing nuclear power in the past.

"I'd rather we didn't have it," Patrick told reporters, referring to Pilgrim. "I've expressed that publicly before and I've expressed that to the (NRC) and I'll do it again."

Patrick also said he doesn't have the authority to shut down the plant.

"It doesn't matter what I think," he said.

The NRC voted in 2012 to relicense Pilgrim through 2032. Pilgrim's operators say the plant produces about 10 percent of Massachusetts' electricity needs and the plant is safe and secure.

Diane Turco of the group Cape Downwinders pointed to a non-binding referendum approved by more than a dozen Cape Cod communities last year that called for the plant's shut down.

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