WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, released the following statement after the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Inspector General (IG) published a report today that fully exonerated Chairman Greg Jaczko of all four allegations related to his exercise of authority during the Fukushima meltdowns and management of the COmmission. The report cites that Chairman Jaczko “did not exceed his authorities” in response to the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns and “made reasonable efforts” to keep his colleagues on the Commission informed.
“This report is a welcome vindication of Chairman Jaczko and his leadership of the Commission during the worst nuclear disaster in history,” said Rep. Markey. “What this report shows is that Greg Jackzo has been the victim of a sustained and mean-spirited whispering campaign by hostile NRC Commissioners who resented a strong Chairman with a real commitment to nuclear safety who wanted to turn the NRC into a real watchdog.
“For far too long, the Commission has been stacked with nuclear industry cronies who reliably voted the way the industry wanted and then passed through the revolving door to work or lobby for the companies they had regulated. Chairman Jaczko wanted to change that and to have a Commission that actually supported the same commitment to safety embraced by so many dedicated professionals on the NRC staff.
“He clearly faced powerful resistance for that effort, and this report shows how pathetically weak the various allegations made against him really are. Because Chairman Jaczko’s adversaries on the Commission and in the nuclear industry knew they could not win the argument on safety, they decided to go negative and go personal.
“It is time we put this soap opera aside and get back to the work of fully implementing the recommendations of the Fukushima taskforce and ensuring the safety of our nuclear fleet.”
In December 2011, Rep. Markey released the report “Regulatory Meltdown”, which documents how NRC Commissioners William Magwood, Kristine Svinicki, William Ostendorff and George Apostolakis sought to impede the NRC response to the Fukushima meltdowns by delaying the public release of and action on the recommendations made by the NRC's Near-Term Task Force on Fukushima.
Four of the Commissioners currently serving at the NRC regrettably have a history of voting against the safety recommendations put forward by technical experts, including its own advisory committees. Some of these votes have occurred since the meltdowns. A partial summary of these votes can be found HERE.