On the one-year anniversary of PG&E’s announcement of its Joint Proposal to shut down the Diablo Canyon plant, San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (MFP) continues to press for earlier closure dates.
Attorney Sabrina Venskus represents MFP before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) which must approve details of the Joint Proposal before it goes into effect. MFP, in its Opening Brief before the CPUC, asserts that the rate-payers and the people of the State of California would be better served with closure in 2019/2020, rather than the 2024/2025 dates proposed by PG&E. The earlier closure dates lessen the amount of environmental damage as well as economic, safety and reliability risks. Five fewer years of operation would also prevent the destruction of billions of ocean animals and avoid the generation of tons of additional radioactive wastes.
Also of grave concern to MFP is PG&E’s announced plan to defer maintenance and to cancel projects to replace or update equipment in the aging plant – designed in the 1960s and constructed during the next two decades. The history of nuclear plants shows a pattern of the largest portion of accidents and failures happening in the break-in or wear-out phases of operation. Diablo Canyon is in that wear-out phase now.