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More Details Emerge About Edison’s Actions Before Replacing Generators At San Onofre

Southern California Edison and Mitsubishi put together an "Anti Vibration Bar Design Team" that held numerous meetings when it became apparent that the new design of the steam generators at San Onofre could lead to the tubes vibrating, causing damaging wear. But the companies decided not to make possible changes identified by the team.

Aired 2/7/13 on KPBS Midday Edition.


Arnie Gundersen, consultant, Friends of the Earth

Rochelle Becker, Executive Director, Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility



SCE Addresses Congressional Letter

SCE Addresses Congressional Letter

SCE Addresses Congressional Letter

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A couple stands near the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station at San Onofre ...
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Above: A couple stands near the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station at San Onofre State Beach on March 15, 2012 south of San Clemente, California.

That's according to information from Massachusetts Congressman Ed Markey, ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee. Markey joined California Senator Barbara Boxer in sending a letter to the head of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission this week, calling for a federal investigation after uncovering documents that she says suggest Edison and the manufacturer of the plant's ailing steam generators were aware of design problems before the equipment was installed.

Markey quotes from the document that the only specific reason for the decision not to implement the potential design modifications was the desire to avoid a more lengthy license amendment process that would have involved adjudicatory hearings.

One day after U.S Senator Barbara Boxer accused Southern California Edison of knowing its steam generators at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station were flawed before they were installed, SCE sharply denyied that it knowingly installed the faulty equipment.

In a statement out Thursday, SCE says "it would never, and did not, install steam generators that it believed would not perform safely."

Edison says that is simply not accurate" and pointed out the equipment carried a 20-year warranty against defects.

The NRC responded to Boxer/Markey's letter with a statement that the agency will "review all available information in making a judgement as to whether the plant would meet our safety standards if restart were permitted."

An NRC meeting is set for next Tuesday evening in Capistrano Beach to share NRC'S progress in considering San Onofre's restart plan. However NRC spokesman Victor Dricks said the letter from Boxer and Markey will not be discussed at that meeting.

A hearing on Thursday at which industry experts testified before the NRC about the restart plan made no mention of the issue raised in the letter from Boxer and Markey.

The NRC is scheduled to make a decision in April or May on whether to allow Edison to move forward with its plan to restart the plant at reduced power.

San Onofre has been shut down for more than a year after unusual damage was found in steam generator tubes that carry radioactive water.

NRC Meeting is from 6-9 pm, Capo Beach Church, 25975 Domingo Ave Capistrano Beach

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 7, 2013 at 6:42 p.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

Oh sure, since all this info has not been released to the Public, we are left to "trust" SEC to be telling US what happened when!

A solution is for SEC to release all the "perpriority" information and allow a public review; if they have nothing to hide, they should jusmp at this chance to "PROVE THEIR CASE" otherwise they are suspect just like TEPCO was/is in the Fukushima Trillion Dollar Eco-Disaster Debacle in Japan!

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Avatar for user 'WhatsItAllAbout'

WhatsItAllAbout | February 7, 2013 at 6:45 p.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

What is worse? That Edison installed defective Steam Generators and KNEW they were defective? Or that Edison is CLUELESS about how defective the equipment they design and install is. Sorry Edison, either way you look very very bad and even criminal. Thank You Senator Boxer, don't back down from protecting the public.
All of our public leaders and elected officials need to join Senator Boxer and Rep. Markey in demanding a full investigation and license amendment hearing. Edison and MHI need to release all documents. They already had all of their "competitors- Areva/Westinghouse" look at all that classified info. I don't think we have to worry that anyone else out there is planing on constructing defective steam generators. Why the secrecy?

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 9:29 a.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

The Anti-Vibration Bar Design Team at San Onofre…

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 9:41 a.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

What caused the destruction of San Onofre’s new replacement steam generators?

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 9:49 a.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

Edison employees rack up millions in business expenses

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 9:58 a.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

FYI ☢ Cost effective, $URE for the Utility!

Chicago Tribune: Nuclear plants are paying customers to use power

Chief Executive Christopher Crane said Thursday that the rapid pace of subsidized wind-generated electric power could ultimately force it to shutter nuclear plants.
“What worries me is if we continue to build an excessive amount of wind and subsidize wind, the unintended consequence could be that it leads to shutting down plants,” Crane said in an interview. [...]
Crane has said the tax credit keeps turbines spinning even when there is no demand for power, driving down the price Exelon receives for power from its nuclear plants.
In wind-rich areas like Illinois, that means there are instances when Exelon pays customers to take their power rather than the other way around. The phenomenon is referred to as negative electricity pricing. For instance, the company’s Byron nuclear plant in Illinois, Crane said, is in a negative pricing scenario 16 percent of the time. [...]
“Exelon made a bet on the electricity spot market just like California did 10 years ago. When prices went down, they lost their bet and they’re looking for a scapegoat. The good news is the same low prices that hurt Exelon benefit homes and businesses. Negative prices are a red herring. Exelon does not want low prices or any resources like wind that bring prices down.” -Rob Gramlich, the American Wind Energy Association’s interim chief executive

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Avatar for user 'CaptD'

CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 3:29 p.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

Proposal that would ban nuclear power in California cleared to petition for 2014 ballot placement

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CaptD | February 9, 2013 at 3:33 p.m. ― 4 years, 1 month ago

At $54 Million a month, I'm amazed that ratepayers are not "up in arms" about getting ZERO energy and still having to pay!

Edison said that the new replacement steam generators would SAVE ratepayers a BILLION DOLLARS but instead they have cost the ratepayers over a Billion Dollars!

How many will ask the CPUC for a refund?

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