Holtec International has 1.1 million gallons of radioactive wastewater to dispose of.

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant off the coast of Plymouth. David L Ryan / The Boston Globe

The company working to decommission the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant in Plymouth is still considering dumping radioactive waste into Cape Cod Bay despite opposition from activists, lawmakers and the EPA.

Holtec International has 1.1 million gallons of waste water from the plant that closed in 2019 that it must dispose of.

NBC 10 Boston reported on Tuesday that a representative from Holtec presented the company’s current plans at a town hall meeting on Monday evening.

“When you make a liquid discharge, once it is released it is diluted with seawater to an undetectable level, and doing so in small batches is actually the safest way,” said Holtec spokesman Patrick O’Brien.

But activists from Save our baya coalition of conservation groups, local leaders and citizens who oppose the proposed disposal say Holtec wants to store nuclear waste in Cape Cod Bay just because it is cheaper.

While O’Brien denied NBC 10 Boston that landfilling was a cheaper option, the group that protested in Plymouth ahead of Monday’s meeting said the waste would make the water in and around the bay unsafe.

“Polluted water will inevitably flow into Plymouth, Duxbury and Kingston Bays. The bays are semi-closed and the circulation currents tend to hold water in them. This [does] they do not wash out quickly and disperse into the ocean, but are likely to end up in sediment at the bottom of bays or beaches, the group wrote on its website.

In addition, Save Our Bay says nuclear waste can contaminate fish, oysters, clams and clams that support the local aquaculture industry by making the prime product local unsafe.

Losing local fishing and potentially tourism due to contaminated waters would damage the local economy, the group says.

Save Our Bays is not the only one to oppose the proposed dumping. In January 2022, Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senator Ed Markey, MP Bill Keating and MP Seth Moulton I sent a letter to Holtec objects.

Additionally in July The EPA wrote to the company saying that it believes the company cannot dispose of waste according to its permit.

According Boston GlobeThe Nuclear Regulatory Commission regulations say that Holtec can discharge water as long as its radioactivity does not exceed certain limits.

Holtec previously said the waste water is treated in-house and is minimally radioactive, Globe reported.

Holtec says it has three other options, according to NBC 10 Boston. It can evaporate wastewater on site as it has done with other wastewater in the last two years, it can move it to a new location out of state, or it can hold water in place and allow it to decompose over several decades.

NBC 10 Boston said O’Brien said the company may choose to combine the four options depending on the results of the wastewater testing Holtec and now also the stateit does.

“We look forward to being transparent and helping people understand the facts over emotional fear,” O’Brien told the news station.

A decision could be made early next year, NBC 10 Boston reported.

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