PG&E preparing study on decommissioning of Diablo Canyon Power Plant
Publish Date: 7/18/2016
By: Angel Russell
With Diablo Canyon Power Plant set to shut down in nine years, Pacific Gas and Electric is now studying just how to go about decommissioning the plant.
“We are going to take our time and do this right and put together an effective and safe decommission plan,” said Blair Jones, a spokesperson for PG&E.
Part of the plan is coming up with a way to fund the shutdown. A taxpayer trust fund is currently at about $3 billion, but shutting down the plant is expected to ring up a tab of nearly $4 billion.
“We have budget proposals that we believe will cover the cost, but if we come to a situation where we determined that there (are) more funds needed, then there (are) mechanisms with the state to allow us additional funding,” said Jones.
One of the major issues with shutting down a nuclear plant is what to do with spent fuel. The plan is to store the waste on site temporarily.
“The federal government made a commitment to accept spent fuel once it was ready to be delivered. We expect the federal government to live up to that commitment,’ said Jones.
Meanwhile, county officials are beginning discussions to address their own concerns with the shutdown.
“We certainly have a variety things that may or may not align with PG&E’s interest, but that’s why there’s a state process,” said San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill.
One of the main areas of concern is ensuring San Luis Obispo County won’t take a major economic hit once the reactors shut down.
“You can never be prepared to lose that many jobs that pay that well. But we are going to do what we can to make sure the community stays vibrant economically,” said Hill.
PG&E remains confident that closing down the plant can be done safely and effectively.
“Decommissioning the power plant is a multi-year process. What’s important to remember is that we are not going away. We are going to be in this community for many decades to come,” said Jones.
PG&E will be holding its first public meeting to discuss the joint proposal and to answer questions about phasing out nuclear power over the next decade.
San Luis Obispo
July 20, 2016
Meeting 1: 12:00-3:45 p.m.
Meeting 2: 4:15-8:00 p.m.
333 Madonna Road
San Luis Obispo, CA 93405
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