In Connecticut, the federal government has awarded renewals for the two nuclear reactors at Millstone to operate until 2035 and 2045.
In New York, the two plants at Indian Point — built in the mid 1970s, are up for renewal — but both Governor Andrew Cuomo and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman campaigned on closing them.
Anti-nuke community activists say Indian Point has had a checkered performance history, is too close to New York City and is at risk because it sits on the Ramapo fault line.
Former Assemblyman Richard Brodsky said that under current regulations the plant in Buchanan, New York, it would never have won approval to be built at its current location. He said the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is too pro-industry to contemplate a worst-case scenario that he said could have catastrophic consequences for the metro region.
"The regulators are completely absent in terms of the unexpected," said Brodsy, who is now a fellow at City University.
But Jerry Nappi, the spokesman for Entergy that operates Indian Point, said the plant has a solid track record and been designed to deal with any contingency. As a result, he said it has strong community support.