Jan. 22, 2002
Ferraro Criticized for Support of Nuclear Dump; Nineteen Groups Urge her to Reconsider
WASHINGTON, DC ? National, Nevada-based and New York-based public interest and environmental organizations sent a letter to Geraldine Ferraro today, urging her to reconsider her support of the controversial proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The former congresswoman and vice-presidential candidate has joined Gov. John Sununu of New York in launching a lobbying campaign on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Alliance for Energy and Economic Growth.
The 19 groups include the Sierra Club, U.S. Public Interest Research Group, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, Nevada-based Citizen Alert and New York?s Global Resource Action Center for the Environment. In the letter, they list numerous problems with the site as reasons Ferraro should withdraw her support. These include its placement above an acquifer, its vulnerability to terrorist attacks, and the public health and safety dangers of transporting waste to the site.
The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI), the industry?s lobbying association, is an influential association member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which has long touted a pro-nuclear agenda. NEI and the Chamber are both on the Steering Committee of the Alliance for Energy and Economic Growth. The nuclear energy industry has strongly supported the Yucca Mountain proposal and will benefit if it is approved.
“Ms. Ferraro is a well-respected leader and we hope to convince her to examine the environmental and public health impacts of the ill-conceived Yucca Mountain project,” said Lisa Gue, policy analyst for Public Citizen?s Critical Mass Energy and Environment Program. “These concerns should not be brushed aside by the narrow economic interests of the commercial nuclear industry.”
Although widely viewed as opposites on the political spectrum, Ferraro and Sununu both sit on the board of advisors of Grassroots Enterprise, a political consulting firm. The former vice president of Grassroots Enterprise, Kyle McSlarrow, is now chief of staff for Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham and is working to gain support for the Bush administration?s pro-nuclear energy plan.
Please click here to view the letter to Ferraro.