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Slo Coast Journal - PG&E Whistleblower Fingers Diablo Safety Dangers - 0 views

    "I am a resident of San Luis Obispo County, and an employee of Diablo Canyon (DCPP).

    I understand that a good many people are very concerned about DCPP after what happened to the plant in Japan. I field questions about our plant almost every day, from neighbors and family members.

    Being aware of both the plant design and conditions at the Fukushima plant and DCPP, I am not worried about a similar disaster here. I could go into the specific reasons why I do not believe such a threat is credible, but that is not why I am writing to you.

    I do believe DCPP is a threat to our community, but it is not because of the plant's design, or a potential natural disaster. I believe the principle threat is the company that runs the plant, PG&E."
Energy Net

Following the flow - 0 views

    "Knowing how salt travels in water is easy, since it dissolves quickly and evenly.

    But determining where groundwater carries that salt isn't as simple.

    Local and state officials whose job it is to keep track of and remove the toxic salt perchlorate are leaning on science to find out how far and fast the Santa Clarita Valley's underground water is traveling - and taking the toxin with it.

    State and local water officials are redoubling efforts to track the spread of perchlorate, in light of the discovery last year of the salt at Well 201 in Valencia, owned by the Valencia Water Company.

    A state health official said the finding was a surprise, although local water officials say the discovery was expected.
    Valencia Water has been testing water from Well 201 every month since first finding perchlorate there in August 2010."
Energy Net

Crews burying mine's toxic past | - 0 views

    "Work has begun to rebury radioactive waste at a former uranium mine where campers once vacationed in a remote corner of the Stanislaus National Forest.

    Forest officials announced that a crew from Engineering/Remediation Resources Group of Martinez began work Aug. 25 at the Juniper Uranium Mine. The remediation is being paid for with $1.5 million from the federal government's Superfund for handling toxic waste.

    The Juniper Uranium Mine is not far off Eagle Meadow Road, about 40 miles east of Sonora and just two miles west of Kennedy Meadow.

    Until eight years ago, the former mine site was used occasionally by RV campers and hunters because it provided a rare level spot to park in a remote section of the forest, said John Buckley, executive director of the Central Sierra Environmental Resource Center."
Energy Net

EPA Halted Extra Testing for Radiation From Japan Weeks Ago | Truthout - 0 views

    "Radiation is expected to continue spewing for months from Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant that suffered a meltdown following an earthquake and tsunami in March, but despite grim reports from Japan, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has quietly stopped running extra tests for radioactive material in America's milk, rain and drinking water.

    The EPA initially ramped up nationwide testing in the weeks following the disaster in Japan, and radioactive materials like cesium and iodine-131 were detected on US soil. Citing declining levels of radiation, the EPA has abandoned the extra tests, even as reports from Japan indicate that the Fukushima plant continues to emit radiation and the disaster is one of the worst in world history."
Energy Net

Nuclear power plant debate in Fresno heats up | - 0 views

    "FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The prospect their elected officials might endorse construction of two nuclear power plants had many county residents upset.

    Dallas Blanchard of Fresno was one of about 20 people who spoke out at Tuesdays Board of Supervisors meeting. "Anybody who is seriously considering voting for this should look at Japan, radiation is still leaking to this day."

    Fresno Social Activist Ellie Bluestein said; "It's hard to believe that supervisors who are seriously concerned about our safety and well being would consider a nuclear part of it."

    But Supervisor Judy Case countered that we shouldn't rule out nuclear because we need more power, and said she doesn't like windmills. "I'm concerned that all those wind generators will be on every hilltop in California. That environmentally is not very attractive to me, I don't like it." "
Energy Net

The Scientific Estate: The Whale and the Reactor Redux - IEEE Spectrum - 0 views

    "Diablo Canyon, home to Pacific Gas & Electric Co.'s lone nuclear power plant, is thousands of kilometers away from Japan's Fukushima disaster, but the vast Pacific isn't vast enough to prevent technology critics from insisting that these two sites share ominous traits.

    The Diablo Canyon Power Plant sits on a bluff just above the Pacific Ocean, not far from San Luis Obispo in central California, a few miles from the offshore Hosgri Fault and only a mile from the recently discovered Shoreline Fault. Operational since 1985 and contributing 20 percent of PG&E's total electricity output, the Diablo plant seemed a sure bet to gain a license renewal from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)-until Fukushima. In the wake of an unprecedented and unimagined tsunami on 11 March, which sent waves above Fukushima's seawall, Diablo Canyon has received its fiercest criticism since 1981, when opponents of nuclear power and the plant's peculiar location nearly succeeded in closing it down."
Energy Net

At California Nuclear Plant, Earthquake Response Plan Not Required - 0 views

    "As the world's attention remains focused on the nuclear calamity unfolding in Japan, American nuclear regulators and industry lobbyists have been offering assurances that plants in the United States are designed to withstand major earthquakes.

    But the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant, which sits less than a mile from an offshore fault line, was not required to include earthquakes in its emergency response plan as a condition of being granted its license more than a quarter of a century ago. Though experts warned from the beginning that the plant would be vulnerable to an earthquake, asserting 25 years ago that it required an emergency plan as a condition of its license, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission fought against making such a provision mandatory as it allowed the facility to be built.

    Officials at Pacific Gas and Electric Company, the utility that operates Diablo Canyon, did not respond to calls seeking comment before the story was published. After publication, a spokesman for the company said the plant does have an earthquake procedure that had been implemented during a 2003 earthquake near the facility, and that staff are trained to respond. The company did not provide further details upon request.

    As Americans absorb the spectacle of a potential nuclear meltdown in Japan -- one of the world's most proficient engineering powers -- the regulatory review that ultimately enabled Diablo Canyon to be built without an earthquake response plan amplifies a gnawing question: Could the tragedy in Japan happen at home?"
Energy Net

Residents Ask for Council Resolution Urging Nuke Plant Shutdown - San Clemente, CA Patch - 0 views

    "Several dozen residents Tuesday urged the San Clemente City Council to adopt an official resolution calling for the shutdown of San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, among other measures.

    "We should learn from the mistakes of others so we don't repeat them," said Karen Tanner of Capistrano Beach. She spoke on behalf of the Orange County Interfaith Coalition for the Environment.

    The anti-nuclear power sentiment has been inflamed since the earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan earlier this spring."
Energy Net

Anti-Nuclear Events in Bay Area Mark Chernobyl Disaster : Indybay - 0 views

    "Activists in the Bay Area are marking the 25th Anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster with rallies, speakers, street theater, and educational events. Calling the Ukraine catastrophe "the most significant nuclear reactor failure in the history of nuclear power", anti-nuke enthusiasts say they want the world to remember that April 26, 1986 was the day when one of the reactors at the Chernobyl nuclear power station exploded, killing plant employees instantly and leading to a projected increase in cancer deaths in the hundreds of thousands.

    Tri-Valley CARES, Plutonium-Free Future and other groups concerned about the proliferation of nuclear power sponsored a panel discussion on April 10 in Oakland called "A Quarter Century of Chernobyl". The panel featured Russian women activists with first-hand experience in that nuclear reactor disaster.

    In Menlo Park, a community demonstration at the busy downtown intersection spilled over to a nearby outdoor cafe where lunchtime patrons became the audience for street theater with an anti-nuke message.
Energy Net

Anti-nuclear camp / Chernobyl 25th anniversary at Sizewell, 22-25 April 2011 - dv - Pic... - 0 views

    These images are from the Sizewell protest in the UK from April 26th 2011
Energy Net

25th Anniversary of Chernobyl: No More Nukes Demo in Menlo Park, CA : Indybay - 0 views

    "As of today, it has been a quarter century since the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. The Raging Grannies, in solidarity with Abalone Alliance in San Francisco and other activists around the world, remembered the victims of that man-made catastrophe. They demonstrated against nuclear energy along the El Camino Real in Menlo Park, California, and performed for a lunch crowd in front of nearby Cafe Borrone."
Energy Net

State senator tells feds to pause license review for Diablo Canyon nuclear pl... - 0 views

    SACRAMENTO - A top regional official of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission told a legislative committee Thursday that the agency intends to proceed with its safety and environmental analysis for extending the license of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant, despite a request from the plant's operator that the agency take no final action until after more thorough seismic studies are completed.

    The federal licensing agency hopes to proceed as scheduled with its review, said Troy Pruett, deputy regional director of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's division of reactor projects.

    "Staff has invested many thousands of hours in environmental and safety review," Pruett told members of the Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee. "Our desire now is to publish that."

    The senator, whose district includes the site of the nuclear plant, assailed the federal agency for what he called its decision to look at Diablo Canyon seismic issues "through rose-colored glasses" despite the damage to nuclear reactors in Japan resulting from last month's earthquake and tsunami.
Energy Net

$64 million quake study for nuclear plant | plant, nuclear, edison - The Orange County ... - 0 views

    A new, $64 million study of earthquake fault patterns around the San Onofre nuclear plant will be proposed Friday by Southern California Edison, its scope broadened and its cost estimate more than doubled because of the nuclear disaster in Japan.
    Edison will propose the study to the California Energy Commission; if approved, it would be paid for through customer rates, although Edison says that would add up to less than one percent of present overall rates.

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    The study will use state-of-the-art technology, characterizing in three dimensional detail the sea floor near the coastal plant and the geological picture beneath the land surface.
    Edison is still evaluating what type of technology to use, but sonar would likely be used to map the ocean floor near the nuclear plant, while seismic vibration measurements as well as lidar, which uses light beamed from planes, would be used on land.
Energy Net

Government Under Fire as Radiation Is Found in Milk, Rain - The Bay Citizen - 0 views

    Radiation from Japan rained on Berkeley during recent storms at levels that exceeded drinking water standards by 181 times and has been detected in multiple milk samples, but the U.S. government has still not published any official data on nuclear fallout here from the Fukushima disaster.

    Dangers from radiation that is wafting over the United States from the Fukushima power plant disaster and falling with rain have been downplayed by government officials and others, who say its impacts are so fleeting and minor as to be negligible.
Energy Net

Ann Garrison: California Fault Lines, Lawmakers, and Nuclear Power - 0 views

    KPFA Weekend News Anchor Anthony Fest: California has two operating nuclear power plants, San Onofre in Orange County, and PG&E's Diablo Canyon Plant in San Luis Obispo County, on the Central Coast.   Both are on the coastline and both are built near earthquake faults.  State Senator Alex Padilla has called for a special hearing at the State capitol on April 14 to examine the risks the two aging plants might pose.  KPFA's Ann Garrison has the story.

    PG&E's Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant on the
    California Coast
    KPFA/Ann Garrison: For the past five years the San Luis Obispo-based Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility has been urging California legislators and oversight agencies to require peer reviewed seismic studies to measure the risk of earthquake damage to Pacific Gas and Electric's (PG&E's) nuclear power plant at Diablo Canyon and Southern California Edison's plant at San Onofre. The California Energy Commission has requested that the California Public Utilities Commission require PG&E do the latest, advanced 3-D studies on both old and new earthquake faults beneath Diablo Canyon before granting any ratepayer funding for its license renewal applications, but PG&E has opposed and fought the requirement to do the studies, and the CPUC has failed to act. Rochelle Becker, Executive Director of the Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility, says that Japan's worsening nuclear catastrophe could have been California's, and that Californians should be able to insist that the studies be done now.
Energy Net

U.S. reactors can withstand quakes, tsunami: NRC chief | Reuters - 0 views

    FUKUSHIMA--Strong horizontal jolts dislodged ceiling pipes and massive amounts of water started flooding out--this was the frightening scene experienced by a worker who was in the building housing the No. 1 reactor of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant when the earthquake hit Friday.

    His tale told to The Yomiuri Shimbun sheds light on the heavy initial damage the quake caused inside the building.

    The man works for a company contracted by Tokyo Electric Power Co. to handle inspections and maintenance of the reactor in Fukushima Prefecture. He had occasionally worked at the plant since last summer.
Energy Net

The Energy Net » NRC Commission lies to the public about seismic safety at Ca... - 0 views

    I was appalled at the NRC chairman Jaczko's press briefing yesterday when asked point blank how many nuclear reactors in the US were near faults…

    Instead of answering the question he said that all reactors near faults designed withstand both quakes and tsunami events.
    There was no follow-up question as to whether or not this country's evacuation plans would do any better than Japans.
Energy Net

SAN ONOFRE: Newer nuke designs have no traction here - 0 views

    "New nuclear reactor designs on the horizon have won the favor of the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission, but don't expect to see them in Southern California anytime soon.

    Nuclear scientists and engineers gathered for a conference in San Diego earlier this month to talk about advances in the field.

    Although the new designs are billed as safer and more efficient, it is unlikely that Southern California Edison will spend the billions necessary to upgrade the two aging reactors at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, which sits on the coast about 18 miles north of Oceanside, observers and officials said last week.

    Those reactors started operating in 1982 and are licensed to continue until 2022."
Energy Net

U.S. Department of Labor - Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP) - News Relea... - 0 views

    "The U.S. Department of Labor will visit Livermore, Calif., on June 29 and Emeryville, Calif., on June 30 to present information about the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act, which provides compensation and medical benefits to employees who became ill as a result of working in the nuclear weapons industry. Through town hall meetings, officials will present details about two new classes of former employees at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory recently added to the EEOICPA's Special Exposure Cohort, as well as provide an overview of the program. The Labor Department's California Resource Center staff will also be available at the town hall meetings for extended periods of time to assist individuals with the filing of claims under the EEOICPA.

    A worker who is included in a designated SEC class of employees, and who is diagnosed with one of 22 specified cancers, may receive a presumption of causation under the EEOICPA. On April 5, 2010, the secretary of health and human services designated the following two classes of employees as additions to the SEC: all employees of the Department of Energy, its predecessor agencies, and their contractors and subcontractors, who worked at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, Calif., from Jan. 1, 1950, through Dec. 31, 1973, and at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif., from Aug. 13, 1942, through Dec. 31, 1961, for at least 250 workdays occurring either solely under this employment or in combination with workdays within other classes of employees in the SEC. Both designations became effective on May 5, 2010. As the Department of Health and Human Services determines and introduces new SEC classes into the EEOICPA claims process, the Labor Department's role is to adjudicate these claims based on the new SEC class definition.

    To date, more than $118 million in compensation and medical bills have been paid to 1,0
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