Bedside Manners for the Long Slow Death of San Onofre, a Radioactive Neighbor.


By a Mel and Galal Kernahan of Laguna Woods;  found yesterday morning on the tables at Los Amigos;  pending permission to reprint but it LOOKED like it was crying out for a blog post!  SONGS with pasties image by our frequent commenter “anon.”

Last weekend it was announced that the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (S.O.N.G.S.) is indeed broken.  It can’t be fixed.  After decades topping the list of nuclear reactors with the most safety problems in the US, it is to be shut down for good.  It will never again be creating toxic radioactive waste beside the I-5 Freeway.  Hundreds of tons will have to stay put, submerged in tanks of water until cooled down enough to be transferred into cement storage tanks.

The S.O.N.G.S. ongoing threat to public health must be decommissioned.  That will require significant amounts of time, and our money.  The company has $2.7 BILLION in a trust fund for precisely that purpose, collected from you and me with every electrical bill we’ve ever paid.

Orange and San Diego County dwellers have paid into this trust fund for decades.  On our electrical bills, the charges are clearly identified as payment for NUCLEAR DECOMMISSIONING.  These additional electricity costs are shared with us by the businesses we patronize, and in governmental taxes and fees.  Gotta keep the courthouse and grocery store lights on!

This cash flow bulks up the NUCLEAR DECOMMISSIONING FUNDS that are managed by the S.O.N.G.S. operator, Southern California Edison.  It’s a cash flow that met the costs of closing down San Onofre Unit 1, years ago.  (#1 of its three.)

Here’s a glimpse of how Southern California Edison views its “stewardship” of the NUCLEAR DECOMMISSIONING FUNDS:  The utilities recently sought permission to invest those funds into more exotic investments to garner greater returns, and some of that was approved in January.

Critics of those seeking to shut down S.O.N.G.S. try to convince us that the power and profit involved are essential to Orange and San Diego Counties’ economies and well-being.  Few fall for that line any more.  The OC Register recently featured a revealing head-on collision between its Editorial Punditry and its “News Hound,” in its Monday June 10 edition.

The pundits hit warp speed with a sermon entitled So Long, San Onofre – Where Will Replacement Come From?  News Hound Denisse Salazar answered with Power from Solar Nears Amount Lost from San Onofre.

Is there anyone left in Southern California who hasn’t noticed how rapidly solar arrays are appearing everywhere?  Meanwhile Register editorialists urge us to cheer on “fracking” (chemical force-flushing of petroleum underground) to meet energy needs.  They urge that power plants be liberated from environmental cap-and-trade measure in spite of global warming.

The News Hound led her column with

Solar power generation on California’s electricity grid reached an all-time high Friday, totaling enough to power more than 1.5 million homes, state officials said Sunday …

That nearly equals the 2.250-megawatt nuclear power generation the state lost in January 2012, when S.O.N.G.S. shut down… 

“This new record is remarkable considering the amount has more than doubled since last September when solar peaked at 1,000 megawatts,” said Steve Berberich, California Independent System Operator President and CEO. 

California is the largest producer of solar power in the nation…

We Californians need to remember that single-purpose NUCLEAR DECOMMISSIONING money has been billed to us and CONTINUES to come from us.  It appears on every electric bill we receive.

Let’s insist that OUR MONEY be used ONLY for its intended purpose!

– Mel and Galal Kernahan
Wednesday, June 12, 2013.

About Admin

"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.