The San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. File photo
The San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. File photo

By Roger Johnson, San Clemente

Southern California Edison’s draft of their decommissioning plans should not lull residents into a false sense of security.

It is doubtful that Edison can move all radioactive fuel from pools to storage casks by 2019, and it is disturbing that Edison is determined to buy unsafe storage casks because they are cheaper. Also buried in the report is an admission that until 2032, Edison might be releasing as much radioactivity into the air and ocean as they did when the reactors were operating full blast.

What Edison doesn’t want everyone to realize is that this facility will soon become a nuclear waste dump—Yucca Mountain, ZIP code 92672. Thousands of tons of uranium and plutonium will be sitting right here in casks on a concrete pad next to Interstate 5 until 2049. At that time, the Department of Energy is supposed to take it away but only if a deep underground repository is built. There are no plans to build one, and experts are skeptical that such a facility will be built. The nation’s only facility in New Mexico was closed a few months ago, after fires, explosions and radiation leaks.

Even more troubling is the lack of action by local politicians, ranging from city councils to our Congressman Darrel Issa. None has protested our becoming a nuclear waste dump. They should be demanding that all San Onofre nuclear waste should be moved to a remote and safer temporary location. No one is willing to take a stand or even contact the officials who are delighted that residents and politicians are meekly going along with the plan to turn south Orange County into a nuclear waste dump. Going along with Edison’s “plan” is no plan at all.

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comments (1)

  • Roger doesn’t have a clue as to what he is talking about–as usual. He claims that “It is doubtful that Edison can move all radioactive fuel from pools to storage casks by 2019…” How would he know? What is his experience in this field? Zip! And SCE cannot place spent fuel assemblies in anything but an NRC approved cask so he is again, out to lunch. Whatever SCE plans to do, he immediately criticizes.
    He claims he wants the spent fuel moved pronto, but will he and his anti-nuke pals support opening Yucca Mt., the site chosen for long term storage? The short answer is no but readers need to ask Roger and his fellow activists, and keep asking them why they won’t support this if, as they claim, they want the fuel moved quickly. Anti-nukes opposed Yucca Mt. BEFORE any studies were done and the local anti-nukes are following their elders in lock step and won’t be satisfied until all the employees in nuclear facilities have lost their jobs as their plants are shut down.
    Roger is simply lying when he says “What Edison doesn’t want everyone to realize is that this facility will soon become a nuclear waste dump.” It is not up to Edison whether Yucca Mt. opens to receive fuel and indeed would be to their benefit if and when it does. Besides, SCE holds public meetings, encourages public participation, and announces exactly what they plan to do. How does this equate to the assertion that they wish to mislead the public?
    Another Johnson boner is his call for elected officials to demand spent fuel be “moved to a remote and safer temporary location.” There is no such location nor has one even been considered. It is just part of the campaign to drive up costs to justify their call for nuclear plant closures. Anti-nukes have no intention of contributing positively to the decommissioning process but are after the bigger prize of seeing the demise of the nuclear industry. This novice has an agenda, one that is not beneficial to rate payers nor the state. In the United States Navy we would say he has “demonstrated unreliability.”

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