The Friends of Diablo Canyon will be holding their second annual St. Patrick’s Day rally to increase public awareness of the importance of the continued operation of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Station.
Here are the details:
Dr. Gene Nelson, government liaison for Californians for Green Nuclear Power who has served as a professor of science and engineering courses at several colleges, including Cal Poly and Cuesta College, recently published an Op-Ed in the San Luis Obispo Tribune titled Why we should keep Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant open.
Gene’s letter is an excellent example of the kind of message that citizens who understand the value and the benefits of nuclear energy need to share with their friends and neighbors.
Here are a couple of key quotes:
However, this beneficial plant needs your help, as a small number of very vocal people have attempted to instill fear, both locally and statewide, in an attempt to close the plant. The fearmongers’ emotional appeals have already helped close three other California nuclear power plants. You can help the cause of green energy by attending the second annual Diablo Canyon support rally on St. Patrick’s Day in downtown San Luis Obispo.
To underscore the massive amount of power generated by the plant, in 2014, Diablo Canyon generated 131 percent of the power generated by all wind sources in California, or 161 percent of all California solar power.
The Energy Commission recently commissioned a “study” regarding Diablo Canyon’s clean power not being needed to meet California’s clean air goals via a number of indefensible assumptions to reach that illogical conclusion. This suggests the commission’s “study” was more public-relations puffery than a factual analysis.
SLO County supervisors should work with PG&E to significantly expand the plant’s reverse osmosis desalination plant and install a large-diameter water line from the expanded desalination plant to the South County (See David Sneed’s Feb. 21 article, South County water projects to be considered.) This would provide an extremely reliable and cost-effective source of water, not subject to the vagaries of climate. Permitting wouldn’t be a significant burden, as the reject brine is diluted to ordinary salt water levels as it is discharged to the substantial ocean water cooling stream before it leaves the plant. Obviously, the power to run this expanded desalination plant is abundant, cost-effective and emission-free.
A few weeks ago, the SLO Tribune published an editorial board piece titled How will San Luis Obispo County’s economy fare without Diablo Canyon?. That piece identified the major economic disruption that would occur if the existing units are shut down without being replaced. Here is the concluding paragraph.
Here’s our take: We support a study that would provide fresh insight and concrete suggestions to help the county through the financial fallout of Diablo Canyon’s closure, but we don’t see the need to run more numbers simply to make it appear officials are being proactive.
If Sacramento really wants to help San Luis Obispo County prepare financially for the closure of the Diablo Canyon Power Plant, it should focus on finding solutions, not on doom-and-gloom prognostications.
I sent the below letter to the editor. It was never published, perhaps because I live a few thousand miles away from the plant.
I read with interest the SLO Tribune editorial suggesting that future studies regarding the future of Diablo Canyon and San Luis Obispo County’s economy be framed to find solutions, not repeat the list of expected problems.
Here’s an out of the box solution proposal. Begin planning now for the construction and operation of units 3 and 4 of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Station.
Despite the presence of several small faults discovered at convenient moments in Diablo’s history by oil-company employed geologists, the site has many attributes that make it a favorable location for new nuclear reactors.
It’s on an enormous body of cold water that helps improve its thermal efficiency. It has an already established plant site with good access roads, transmission lines, a protective cliff, and a well-qualified local work force.
The highest, best use for the site, the one that would provide the most positive economic impact would be a carefully planned and executed construction project for a pair of passively safe advanced light water reactors recently approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
There are several available designs, including the GE-Hitachi ESBWR and the Westinghouse AP1000. Start now while interest rates are low and time is available.