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Citizens Panel To Discuss San Onofre

The process to decommission the San Onofre nuclear power plant moves forward a bit as Southern California Edison convenes its citizens panel.

The citizens panel that will help communicate what's happening with the decommissioning of the San Onofre Nuclear power plant meets for the first time Tuesday.

By Alison St John

San Onofre from Interstate 5.

The group was convened by Southern California Edison, the nuclear station's majority owner. The utility hopes panel members can serve as conduits for information about a process that could last decades.

The committee includes representatives from a wide range of groups with a stake in how the plant is dismantled. They include Camp Pendleton, labor groups and representatives from nearby county governments. UC San Diego professor David Victor is an energy policy scholar who will chair the committee.

"There are a lot of key decisions to be made," said David Victor, UC San Diego professor and energy policy scholar.

Among the questions needing answers, how rapidly does decommissioning unfold. What's done with the site itself.

"Some of these issues the co-owners have no real options because there are regulatory requirements, but for many of them they need input from the local communities," Victor said.

The next major step for the utility is to map out the preferred decommissioning plan. That could happen by the end of summer.

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