Sunday, March 30, 2014

SCE Cited For Major Nuclear Related Safety Violation At San Onofre

Get SCE Out of San Onofre
Background: NRC Spent Fuel Pool Cooling Requirements:

“Each licensee shall develop and implement guidance and strategies intended to maintain or restore core cooling, containment, and spent fuel pool cooling capabilities under the circumstances associated with loss of large areas of the plant due to explosions or fire ….”

The San Onofre spent fuel cooling fire protection plan in the event of a large fire and/or explosion hinges on the expertise and staffing of the on-sight San Onofre Fire Department.

Since the San Onofre Fire Department and Emergency Planning Personnel Staffing was reduced to a skeleton crew without prior approval from the NRC after a full and proper evaluation, the existing fire plan is now outdated and unrealistic in event of a large fire or explosion.

A Spent Fuel Pool Cooling Accident, in case of a large fire or explosion without adequate and demonstrated mitigation measures is a MAJOR Nuclear Safety Concern for all the millions of Southern Californians living within the 10 Mile Emergency Protection Zone.  Remember Fukushima's triple meltdowns occurred because of a failure to keep their reactors cool after the big earth quake and tsunami which occurred on 03/11/11.

Last Friday, the NRC cited SCE, the operator of San Onofre's nuclear power plant for violating NRC rules by failing to get approval before eliminating 39 emergency-response jobs after the plant closed last year.

Historically, NRC Region IV has had the habit of citing Southern California Edison with only low level violations, even if the violations were actually severe violations.  This cozy relationship was a contributing factor in the radioactive leak that resulted in the early decommissioning of San Onofre Units 2 & 3 and the loss of billions of dollars to SoCal ratepayers that could have been prevented, if the NRC had enforced the Federal Regulations as written.  This type of safety enforcement is not good for Californians or the NRC.  Now a serious review/investigation and proper action/fines are required by the NRC and its Commissioners, to assure Nuclear Safety is maintained at San Onofre and all the other US Nuclear Power Plants.

The question the NRC should ask is, "Knowing that the SPENT FUEL POOLS MUST STILL BE KEPT COOL 24/7 no matter what, if a major earth quake occurred tonight, would San Onofre Fire Dept.'s skeleton crew be able to guarantee US that they could prevent a nuclear accident from occurring, especially since the 39 emergency-response positions that were illegally eliminated, probably cost ratepayers much less than even one still employed highly paid nuclear manager who would be home sleeping?  

The question that the CPUC should ask is, "If SEC is really interested in safety as they keep telling us, what is the reasonableness of continually cutting corners on those that actually insure our safety, while at the same time retaining other highly paid nuclear Staff?
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Monday, March 24, 2014

Private Profit, Public Debt, The Nuclear Saga Continues In San Clemente

San Onofre Nuke
Would you give 3 hours of your time on Tuesday to lower cancer rates 
in San Clemente and adjacent communities?
Studies show that communities who are actively involved in the decommissioning of their power plants
result in lower radiation readings. Less radiation, less cancer.

On Jan 2012 So Cal Edison' s new steam generators released what they say is a "small amount" of radiation. This "small amount" to them is somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 gallons of highly radioactive cooling water, that turned into highly radioactive steam spread upon the Community of San Clemente.

Each Day San Onofre operated So Cal Edison made an estimated $1 million dollars and produced about 500 lbs of deadly nuclear waste. The $2.7 Billion ratepayers have paid into the San Onofre decommissioning fund only equals about $50 per pound to store this waste for the next million years. These decommissioning funds will have to be spent very wisely.  On top of these funds So Cal Edison says they want another 2 billion dollars for decommissioning and in time we all know this cost will go up.

The question that should be in every Californian's mind is, Just how many nuclear plants has So Cal Edison decommissioned, and what was the radiation rate of the site after they were done?

I would like to see So Cal Edison removed from any further work at San Onofre, replaced by a company with the best track record in the industry for safely returning a site to its former state. Whoever that may be, perhaps San Onofre should be placed on the EPA's superfund list due to the shear amount of radioactive waste found on site.

I do not want to see So Cal Edison spending a "small amount" of the decommissioning funds as they see fit as it stands now, in essence profiting on the mess they have left here in San Clemente, when they have proven time and time again that they can play fast and loose with the facts regarding this now decaying nuclear waste generating station.

I would like to see a Citizens oversight committee in charge of the purse strings related to the decommissioning project that as we all know will last many many years.

To this Citizens oversight committee I would ask
  • to see the data from the current radiation monitoring network on site at SONGS setup for public access on the internet for real time scrutiny of ongoing releases related to the decommissioning.
  • to see a tsunami wall built to the same standards for an expected tsunami that our neighboring city of Dana Point is using, an estimated 42 foot tsunami verses our 14 foot tsunami at low tide, 
  • to see our spent fuel pools hardened against terrorist attack, as losing water to these pool could still devastate the entire west coast of north america. 
  • to see our current dry cask storage moved to a safer location inland, protected by earthen berms and separated by the same amount of space as is standard in the rest of our nations nuclear sites. 
  • to see any high burn up fuel placed in canisters designed for this more dangerous spent fuel.
  • to know if any of the members of this committee have ever received funding from So Cal Edison.