Environment | National

MPR: NRC worked with Prairie Island Community on study

"The Prairie Island nuclear power plant is a step closer to winning approval to operate for another 20 years.

The federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced Tuesday that it has found no environmental concerns that would prevent extending the life of the plant near Prairie Island.

In a first, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission worked directly with the Prairie Island Indian Community, the plant's nearest neighbors, While preparing an environmental study.

The NRC agreed to formally accept the community's input and to pay special attention to its concerns, which include long-term exposure to radiation and high-voltage power lines. The tribe also is worried about what it describes as inadequate monitoring of radiation releases, and the ongoing storage of radioactive waste on site.

On some issues, the NRC and the Prairie Island Community could not come to agreement, and the report simply presents the views of the community with little comment, Tribal attorney Phil Mahowald said.

"We still have our concerns," Mahowald said. "We still don't believe they've been adequately recognized much less mitigated, but that's the way things stand." "

Get the Story:
Federal government clears path for Prairie Island extension (Minnesota Public Radio 5/18)

Related Stories:
MPR: Prairie Island Tribe worried about safety at nuclear plant (3/17)