New US study on nuclear plant health risks hailed

From BusinessWeek:

Pennsylvania officials and activists say they are glad the federal government is taking another look at whether people who live near nuclear plants have a higher risk of getting cancer.

The federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced last month that it was asking the National Academy of Sciences to do a "state-of-the-art study" on cancer risk for populations surrounding nuclear power facilities.

The academy is being asked to update a 1990 study released by the National Cancer Institute that found no increased risk of cancer deaths in counties surrounding 62 nuclear facilities, "including all of the nuclear power reactors operational before 1982," the commission said.

NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said the question of possible health effects comes up frequently from the public.

Read more