Community plans rally to oppose Prairie Island expansionby Elizabeth Baier, Minnesota Public Radio
Red Wing, Minn. — Members of the Prairie Island Indian Community will rally this Friday morning to oppose the expansion of a nearby power plant.
The rally is a reaction to a decision by the public utilities commission that allows 35 additional casks of nuclear waste at the Prairie Island plant. Tribal members will meet outside the administrative building in Welch.
Ron Johnson, the tribal council president, said the tribe opposes the decision
"We've been fighting this battle for so long it just kind of gets aggravating that we have to go to these extremes to let our voices be known of how we're not happy of what's going on down there at Prairie Island," Johnson said.
The PUC said it's confident the federal government will soon provide a place to store radioactive waste permanently.
Johnson said it's the responsibility of the federal government to find a safe place to store nuclear waste.
"I think it's time for the federal government to step up in its fiduciary responsibility of the federal government, along with the state of Minnesota and all the other facilities that are storing above ground waste, to wake up the federal government and lets get a safe place to store it and if not need to find some alternative place to store it," he said.
The issue of nuclear waste storage will go to the state Legislature next year.