Over the weekend, an anonymous whistleblower told a member of the Vermont Public Oversight Panel that a recent leak of radioactive chemicals from a nuclear power plant in that state is not the first it has experienced. The plant is currently trying to locate the source of the leak, while the whistleblower reported that leaks have occurred previously, and that the power plant attempted to fix them without shutting down or reporting the problem.

Today, it was confirmed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that the whistleblower had told the truth about the earlier radioactive leaks. The whistleblower reported that earlier leaks have occurred in the same area that is currently under investigation for the current leak. The confirmation raises questions about why the owners of the plant repeatedly told state regulators there were no underground pipes that carry radioactive chemicals at the Vermont reactor.

These developments come in the wake of an announcement by President Obama that his administration will be developing an $8 billion loan for construction of a new nuclear reactor in Georgia and prove how imperative the need is for strong oversight of the nuclear industry.