Entergy may have found tritium source at Vt Yankee

* Tritium levels around plant declining

* Company says working on underground pipe

NEW YORK, March 11 (BestGrowthStock) – Entergy Corp (ETR.N: ) may
have found the source of the radioactive tritium leak at the
620-megawatt Vermont Yankee nuclear power reactor, electricity
traders said Thursday.

The traders pointed to a series of reports from the company
that tritium levels around the plant have been declining since
mid-February. The reports focus on work being done on an
underground pipe, called the advanced off gas tunnel.

Vermont Yankee officials would say only that workers
continue their investigation into the source of the tritium,
first discovered in January, while engineers develop a plan to
eliminate a leak from the underground pipe.

In February, the company reprimanded several plant managers
for making allegedly misleading comments that there were no
underground pipes at the plant.

The company said its managers meant there were no
underground pipes touching dirt as opposed to underground pipes
contained in concrete like the pipe the engineers are working
on.

Tritium is a mildly radioactive isotope of hydrogen that
occurs naturally in very small amounts in ground water. It is
also a byproduct of power production in nuclear plants.

Entergy said there were no detectable tritium levels found
in any drinking water wells or the Connecticut River.

Vermont Yankee is located near the Connecticut River in
Vernon, in Windham County, about 140 miles (225 km)
west-northwest of Boston.

The tritium leak, along with concerns over power prices,
worries about Entergy’s plan to spin off its non-regulated
nuclear power plants including Vermont Yankee, and anger over
the misleading underground pipe comments, among other things,
led the Vermont Senate in February to vote overwhelmingly to
shut the reactor in 2012 when its license expires.

Entergy, however, has said it would keep working with state
officials and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in an
effort to win a 20-year renewal of Vermont Yankee’s operating
license.

The NRC is reviewing Entergy’s 2006 application to renew
the plant’s 40-year operating license for another 20 years.

Stock Market Research

(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Julie Ingwersen)

Entergy may have found tritium source at Vt Yankee