San Onofre nuclear power plant approved to be torn down

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – They’ve been a part of our landscape for almost a half century. The iconic domes of San Onofre are a landmark on the California coast.

Well get ready. San Onofre just got permission from the California Coastal Commission to tear those landmarks down. “This is a big deal, it really is. It means we can start taking down some of the structures behind me (The Domes).

Up until San Onofre was shut down 6-years ago, those domes provided nuclear power for about one-and-a-half-million people in Southern California. It was shut down after a steam generator malfunctioned in 2013. Since the domes no longer serve a purpose, it’s time to go. But it won’t be easy and it won’t be quick. “All of this will be gone in about 8 to 10 years.”, says Dobken.

But that’s the stuff that’s visibly noticeable. What’s not in plain sight, the transfer of nuclear waste, from wet storage to dry storage. It’s a necessary effort to prepare the nuclear waste to be transferred off the coast.

“We don’t want this stuff on the coast, the people don’t want this on the coast. Now it’s up the Federal Government to take it away and put it in safe storage,” says Dobken.

That’s where the biggest road block is found. Even though the Federal Government is responsible for “all nuclear waste in America”, they dont have a place to put it.

Even though taxpayers and the utility companies spent $12-billion dollars on a place called “Yucca Mountain” in Nevada, President Obama bowed to political pressure and shut it down, before a single ounce of nuclear waste was transferred. $12-Billion dollars, literally down a rat hole.

Of course, San Onofre is not alone in its quest for a place to store the old nuclear waste. As of today, there are 121 shuttered nuclear plants across the country, looking to the Feds for a place to put it. They have no place, even though the $12-billion dollar Yucca Mountain is waiting.

The site currently is storing 3.5 million pounds of nuclear waste that has nowhere else to go. That waste would remain until another storage location is found.

Even though the federal government is responsible for all nuclear waste in America, there are 121 nuclear plants, including San Onofre, looking to the federal government for a place to put their nuclear waste.

Categories: California News, Local San Diego News