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Native American Club Will Explore Fermi 2 Dangers

April 12, 2021

Jesse Deer

Jesse Deer In Water, Tsalagi/Cherokee environmental activist, will be the guest speaker as Schoolcraft College’s Native American Club in conjunction with a social problems course presents “Fermi Issues, Dangers & Alternative Energy Options” on Thursday, April 15.

Jesse is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and a leader in CRAFT (Citizen Resistance At Fermi Two). This grassroots, Indigenous-led environmental activism group is focused on protecting the Great Lakes. The Fermi 2 Power Plant, on the shore of Lake Erie in Newport, Michigan, supplies 20 percent of the power generated by DTE Energy.

He outlines the danger in an online article:

“The Enrico Fermi 2 nuclear facility uses 45 million-plus gallons of water a day for its cooling process, during which it circulates, treats, and releases the water back into Lake Erie. Erie, right? Only the water that comes out of the plant is not the same water that went in. It’s now been diluted with waste and treatment chemicals at a 10:1 dilution ratio, making 4.5 million gallons of waste being released back into Lake Erie, per day; this at temperatures up to 70 degrees hotter than the average of those measured along the western basin of Lake Erie. Thermal pollution and wastewater are not the only issue here. Onsite waste storage and the maintenance is one of our main focuses currently.

“When DTE sought to relicense the facility in 2015 until 2045, making it 65 years old, there was a whole list of compromised issues DTE committed to fix, update and address in the agreement between them and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The problem is that DTE got the license extension based on their commitments to fix the waste storage and now they are going back to modify that agreement. Currently, CRAFT has filed a leave to intervene and ask for a public hearing on DTEs License Amendment Request, which is something that is done when they want to invalidate an agreement with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.”

The presentation will be held from 3-3:45 p.m. on Thursday, April 15. You can join the Zoom meeting here. The Meeting ID is 857 0474 4437.

The event is sponsored by the Student Activities Center, Department of Sociology, and the Native American Club.