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The Nuclear Regulatory Commission, says this story by Judy Benson, is planning a new study to look at whether nuclear plants lead to higher cancer rates. Data from Waterford's Millstone would be used in a pilot phase.
Sadly, the nuclear industry is already stalling on the idea of trying to learn more. I suppose the tobacco industry, once upon a time, would have done anything to stop studies into the harm of cigarette smoking.
The Nuclear Energy Institute, an organization that represents the nuclear industry, criticized the proposal, making note of limitations the academy said such a study would encounter.
"The committee is recommending that significant resources be applied to a project that is looking for a needle in a haystack - when a needle may not even be there in the first place," Ralph Andersen, NEI's chief health physicist, said in an email message. "Based on our initial review of the report, it is not clear how the recommended study would produce scientifically defensible results that would serve to allay public concerns."
Or, excuse us while we bury our heads in the sand a little longer ...