This Saturday, March 28th, the 30th anniversary of Three Mile Island, marks the kick-off of a month-long Vermont tour of the Rolling Sunlight, Greenpeace’s solar truck, starting in Brattleboro. Partnering with VPIRG and Citizen’s Awareness Network, the Rolling Sunlight will visit farmer’s markets and universities, film screenings and galleries, to talk to Vermonters about the energy they want in their state. The Rolling Sunlight will demonstrate the practical uses of solar energy by powering the sound systems for events, and making solar-powered hot chocolate and other treats.
Vermonters have the unique opportunity to close down Entergy's aging reactor, Vermont Yankee, and to choose clean, safe renewable energy for the future of their community. The Vermont legislature has given itself the authority to reject the relicensing of the reactor in 2012. "Fortunately for Vermonters, we're in a unique position to choose our own energy future," said James Moore of VPIRG. "Vermonters are telling their legislators loud and clear that we want an energy future based on local, renewable power. If our leaders listen to the people, we'll have a cleaner energy future. If they listen to Vermont Yankee's corporate owners, we'll get 20 more years of dirty and dangerous power we can't afford."
"Thirty years ago today, at Three Mile Island, we saw one of the worst nuclear disasters in history, and Pennsylvania is still seeing the effects of that radiation. The Public Oversight Panel's report released last week detailed the extent that Entergy Nuclear management is neglecting maintenance and repair. We don't want Vermont to be the next Three Mile Island. We have great renewable alternatives available to us that put Vermont's safety first," said Ed Anthes from Nuclear Free Vermont by 2012.
This is a critical year for Vermont. The NRC's re-licensing process has become nothing more than a rubber stamp that does not adequately reflect the safety concerns of Vermonters. When Entergy took over Vermont Yankee in 2002, they began running it harder than ever before. Over the years, we have seen the effects of inadequate maintenance, and an aging reactor that is ready for retirement. The collapse of a cooling tower in 2007 was a direct result of Entergy pushing the reactor beyond its limits without the necessary maintenance.
"We don't need Entergy here in Vermont: the people don't want it, and a clean energy future, based on renewables like wind and solar, small hydro and efficiency, is possible," said Chris Williams from Vermont Citizens Action Network.
"This 30th anniversary of the meltdown at Three Mile Island is a timely reminder that there is nothing safe about splitting atoms. The Rolling Sunlight will tour the state and rally Vermonters to shut down Vermont Yankee. The people of Vermont, not the corporate CEO's or some federal bureaucrat, can choose clean and renewable energy sources that don't threaten the state with the prospect of a nuclear accident and radioactive contamination," says Jim Riccio, Greenpeace's Nuclear Policy Analyst.
Molly Dorozenski, Greenpeace Media Officer, ,
Ben Walsh, Greenpeace, , 802-223-8421 x6383
Drew Hudson, VPIRG, , 802-272-9763
Tentative Rolling Sunlight Tour Dates:
March 28 - Brattleboro (30th Anniversary of Three Mile Island)
April 1 - Middlebury
April 2 - University of Vermont
April 3 - Brattleboro
April 4 - Norwich
April 5 - Bennington
April 8 - Randolph
April 9 - South Burlington/Colchester
April 11 - Rutland
April 12 - Waitsfield
April 13 - Waterbury
April 16 - Barre
April 19 - Richmond
April 21 - St. Albans
April 22 - Burlington (Earth Day)
April 23 - Shelburne/Hinesburg
April 26 - Johnson/Morrisville (Anniversary of Chernobyl)
April 29 - Montpelier