Selection of the Month

Skagitonians Concerned About Nuclear Plants Records

Month: 
February, 2018
Location: 
Center for Pacific Northwest Studies

Skagitonians Concerned About Nuclear Plants (SCANP) was founded in 1974 by citizens of Skagit County, Washington, to oppose the Puget Sound Power & Light Company’s proposed construction of a nuclear power plant at Bacus Hill, near Sedro-Woolley. Following significant controversy and debate, Skagit County voters cast ballots rejecting the plant in November 1979. The Center for Pacific Northwest Studies (CPNWS) houses an archival collection documenting the history and activities of SCANP, and other peace and anti-nuclear groups in Skagit County, Washington from the 1970s through the 1990s.

SCANP records include newsletters, press releases, and research and educational materials containing substantial information about the proposed plant and local opposition efforts, and reflecting the group’s related concerns about the operations, environmental, and health impacts of the nuclear plant at the Hanford site. Records document local concerns to protect farmland, fisheries, and the scenic beauty of the Skagit River, including administrative and promotional materials from the “Magic Skagit Festival” which was held annually to raise funds for SCANP and later other peace groups.

In addition, the records include extensive files documenting SCANP's legal efforts to oppose the construction of the Bacus Hill nuclear plant and the ensuing legal fight which lasted from 1974 to 1979. These materials include transcripts of Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) hearings, detailed Puget Sound Power & Light plans for the proposed plant, aerial and ground photographs of the proposed plant site, geological and environmental reports analyzing the impact of the plant at the proposed site, and news clippings documenting popular reaction and public opinion towards the project.

Many SCANP members also belonged to other local peace and anti-nuclear groups, including Skagit Citizens For Nuclear Disarmament (re-named Skagit Peace Education Fund in 1986), which were more broadly concerned with peace issues and opposition to nuclear plants, weapons, and war. The CPNWS collection also contains material documenting those efforts, including copies of the “Skagit Network” newsletter as well as publications from other peace and anti-nuclear groups in Portland, Oregon, the Hanford Education Action League, and Physicians For Social Responsibility. The files also contain a variety of general research and educational materials related to nuclear power, waste, and weapons.

The SCANP Records are available for access at the Center for Pacific Northwest Studies, a unit of Western Libraries Heritage Resources (contact cpnws@wwu.edu).