Representatives from Southern California Edison (SCE) are scheduled to appear before the Irvine City Council on May 8th to discuss the Southern California Edison Summer Readiness Program. This presentation comes on the heels of the council’s approval on April 24, 2012 of a letter sent to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regarding the relicensing of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (S.O.N.G.S.) over safety concerns. The plant has been shutdown since January because of problems with unusual tube wear in steam generators.
The letter does not formally oppose the relicensing of S.O.N.G.S. but highlights concerns over the plant’s operation. The council wants the NRC to consider the need for permanent off-site storage for spent nuclear fuel to be identified as a condition for relicensing. The Council also wants the NRC to to expand the emergency planning zone to 50 miles from the current 10 mile radius.
At the April 24th meeting, Councilman Larry Agran proposed additional action by the council. Lacking sufficient support at that time, Agran withdrew his motions and plans to bring them up for consideration following the Edison presentation on May 8th.
On Thursday, SCE announced its intention to restart the S.O.N.G.S. reactors in June. Voice of OC reported the proposal on Friday:
Southern California Edison plans to run the reactors at up to 80 percent power for several months before re-examining them. The utility says its plan would ensure that tube vibration, the ultimate cause of January’s leak, would not take place.
The proposal drew a swift rebuke from environmental advocates, who have argued that restarting the reactor would put the public at risk because the vibration and leak were caused by underlying design flaws. Read More.
In an email sent on Friday afternoon, activists are encouraging a repeat of the 200 person showing at the April 24th meeting, to show support for Councilman Agran’s additional proposals (here).
On April 27th, the Irvine City Council by a 5-0 vote, signed on to a very strong letter regarding the operation of San Onofre and its safety.
The letter will go to everyone from the President on down to other local city councils. But Council Member Agran does not plan to let it end with merely a letter. He intends to continue to hold Edison’s feet to the fire. At Agran’s request, Edison will be returning to the council meeting to discuss their plans to get through the summer without San Onofre. It will be interesting to see what they say in light of information disclosed this week about trying to put Unit II back on line June 1.
The Council meeting is scheduled for 4 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. Here is the agenda for the meeting.