San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (MFP) applauds PG&E for its decision to close the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant. However, our organization asserts that it would be in the best interests of the ratepayers and the citizens of California if the shutdown date were moved forward to 2019/2020, rather than the 2024/2025 dates proposed by PG&E.
Among the reasons for this position are the following:
Early replacement of Diablo Canyon’s energy services is feasible.
• Solar, wind and geothermal energy capacity is increasing rapidly.
• Innovation in energy storage capacity is advancing.
• Community Choice Aggregation is a growing movement.
Aging Plant Equals Increased Risks
• Diablo Canyon’s procurement of mechanical components began more than 50 years ago.
• It is unlikely that Diablo Canyon reactors are mechanically capable of operating reliably until 2025 with their outmoded and degraded equipment.
• PG&E has issued a list of “cancelled projects” that indicates the corporation is reluctant to spend the funds needed for maintenance.
• The age and degradation of DCNPP, coupled with the likelihood of seismic activity in the area, creates economic and environmental risks to ratepayers that are not justified by the purported benefits of keeping the plant in operation for seven or eight more years.
Diablo Canyon’s once-through cooling (OTC) system is responsible for 80 percent of the man-caused damage to the marine environment along the coast of California.
• OTC kills fish, eggs, and larvae and other wildlife through impingement and entrainment.
• OTC discharges tremendous amount of heated water directly into adjacent waters, thereby damaging aquatic species including plankton and plants upon which all aquatic species are dependent for survival.
Jane Swanson, S.L.O.
Jane Swanson is the spokesperson for San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace.