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hwassermanThe catastrophe at Fukushima was not an accident. It’s unfolding again in California.

The next west coast quake could easily shake the two reactors at Diablo Canyon to rubble.

They are riddled with defects, can’t withstand potential seismic shocks from five major nearby fault lines, violate state water quality laws and are vulnerable to tsunamis and fire.

Diablo’s owner, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), is in deep legal and financial crisis.

diablonuclear
A 42-page report from NRC inspector Dr. Michael Peck says new fault line discoveries challenge Diablo’s “presumption of nuclear safety.”

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has just proposed that PG&E be fined $1.4 billion for a 2010 gas explosion and fire that killed eight people and obliterated a neighborhood in San Bruno. The federal government has announced 28 indictments, meaning the CPUC fine may just be the tip of a very expensive iceberg for PG&E. The San Bruno disaster was caused by pipeline defects about which PG&E had been warned for years, but failed to correct. The fines cover 3,798 separate violations of laws and regulations, both state and federal. PG&E was previously fined $38 million for a 2008 pipeline explosion in Rancho Cordova.

Similar defects remain uncorrected at Diablo Canyon, whose radioactive cloud could span the continental U.S. in four days. Mass citizen action recently shut two coastal reactors at San Onofre. It must do the same at Diablo before the next quake hits.

Ironically, as America’s Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) allows Diablo to operate, all 54 reactors in Japan remain shut. Its Nuclear Regulatory Authority has just ordered the Tsuruga reactor to be scrapped because of its vulnerability to earthquakes. Two more elderly reactors at Mihama may also be terminated before year’s end.

At Fukushima, Tokyo Electric Power now admits that far more radiation is spewing into the Pacific than previously admitted. The thyroid cancer death rate among children in the area is 40 times normal. So is the still-rising childhood thyroid abnormality rate, a terrifying re-run of downwind Chernobyl.

Tepco has begun paying compensation to local suicide victims, including the widower of a woman who doused herself with kerosene before burning herself alive.

All of it predictable.

For decades Japanese citizens warned Tepco not to build reactors in an earthquake/tsunami zone. The company repeatedly ignored safety warnings and tolerated known defects that worsened the disaster.

Diablo Canyon’s twin reactors sit eight miles west of San Luis Obispo, between Los Angeles and San Francisco, surrounded by earthquake faults.

The Hosgri, three miles offshore, was found as the reactors were being built. Design specifications were never fully altered to account for it. Nor have they been upgraded for the newly-found Los Osos, San Luis Bay and Shoreline faults.  The Shoreline lies just 650 yard from Diablo’s cores.

The massive San Andreas fault is just 45 miles away, about half as far as was the March 11, 2011, Richter-9.0 epicenter from Fukushima.

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Comments

  • Paul Kangas

    Yes, many of us here agree. But how?
    I like the way the Germans are shutting down ALL of their nukes.
    First they passed a solar payment policy, to require the Utilities to pay home owners & farmers $0.99 kwh for selling solar onto the grid.
    Why did they require Utilities to pay?
    As Ralph Nader told me, when I asked him, “To make it a stable market mechanism.” The payments are not based on taxes.”
    Good point.
    Second they set no cap on how many solar panels a home or farm could have.
    Third, they guaranteed bank loans for 20 years, so anyone could use the money to install solar, or buy a new solar powered house.
    Why was the premium so high?
    Because they decided we are having a crisis that can best be solved by stopping nukes and shifting to solar.
    Germany just broke the world record for generating the most solar of any nation in the world. Remarkable.
    Harvey, thank you for this fizzy article. I like the way you write.
    When will Corte Madera put a solar payment policy on their ballot?

    • Scott Medwid

      Here is a chart on what Germany has been doing. Nuclear power is ramping down a bit but brown
      coal,hard coal, biomass are all increasing. Over all energy production is rising too. Wind and solar are not making a significant increase to meet demand and the cost of electricity in Germany is much higher than nuclear powered France. More carbon is being burned because of Green anti-nuke dilutions like Solartopia. Nuclear power is carbon free power. It is also baseload power. Solartopia can only work with base load covered by clean, reliable 24/7 nuclear power.
      https://www.destatis.de/EN/FactsFigures/EconomicSectors/Energy/Production/Tables/GrossElectricityProduction.html

      • Thomas DeSoto

        The Nuclear Energy Industry is a bunch of thieving monsters who should all be in jail for crimes against humanity, but thanks to corrupt Republicans in Congress they are protected and rewarded with billions of taxpayer dollars to destroy our environment. The radiation from Fukushima is destroying the entire Northern Hemisphere of all life on earth, in our oceans and on the land for thousands of years to come, yet no one is ever been held responsible for these crimes. Like BP in the Gulf whose oil continues to wash up along the shore today, no one is ever held responsible for crimes against the environment, leaving this for future generations to solve. Why build nuclear reactors when no one can figure out what to do with all the waste water collecting each day,…? Trolls like this fool from the Heritage Foundation think they have it all figured out but after three years of Fukushima and fifty years of Chernobyl leaking into the environment with no results to contain this disaster, logic would conclude that self-serving greedy corporate interest trumps all morality in our society today.

    • Hans Kraut

      I am a German and living near Stuttgart. As I see and experience .. the words are one thing, and the deeds an other !!
      Germany has not yet shut down all its nuclear plants !! and very silently in the background this plan (if ever earnest??) gets undermined!!
      Next: You can put solar panels on your roof, if you proof you do not need the money from bank for that action – then you get a cheap credit …
      So it is a way to get the rich ones richer, cause these can save.
      The others (who urgently need a credit for installing the panels) get … nothing!
      It is called “Umverteilung” =”redistribution”.


      Don’t believe everything which is written by the “political correct” press.

      • Ladyred497

        Thank you, Hans, for your input from Germany. So you are also fighting the global corporations who are turning us all into their indentured servants? Is that what you mean by “redistribution?”

      • Paul Kangas

        I just retuned from 3 weeks making a film on solar power in Freiburg, Germany. I interviewed 33 people, from solar farmers making $400./ month from generating solar, to homeowners making $200./ mo., to engineers who own 4 hydro plants in Freiburg, to the Governor of Baden, who told me, on video, that “Germany absolutely will shut down all nukes by 2022.” Proof of this, is they have already shut down 8 nukes. They will shut another one as soon as they build 1 million more solar powered homes. My movie is called “Inevitability 8”. Germany will be the first solar & Re powered nation on earth.
        Unless China gets there first.

  • goedelite

    Under capitalism, corporations are led by executives who are committed to short term profitability. Shareholders want to see increasing share performance from quarter to quarter. Executives who think of the longer term, of responsibiilty to their communities and country, indeed to their own children and grandchildren get replaced.
    The only hope is the replacement of capitalism by worker owned production: socialism for the many instead of present socialism for the fraudulent big-banks and for the arms merchants.
    Unfortunately, the anachronism of capitalism and its devolution to corporate ownership of our government is not easily displaced. The wealthy do not wish to have their grip on the steering wheel removed, even though they are driving us to multiple forms of disaster, from nuclear melt-downs to nuclear war, famine, drought, and the real possibility of extinction.

    • eddieo

      Another – and perhaps more palatable – way is to change the corporate charter so maximizing shareholder profit is not a requirement. Replace it with something along the lines of maximizing community and environmental health for example.

    • The first step is to replace private utility companies with municipal utilities. That takes the profit motive out of the equation. Anaheim’s utility rates dropped about 20% after they took over from Edison. They also dropped their ownership in the San Onofre Nuclear plant. The California Utility Commission doesn’t oversee municipal utility companies. Right now the CPUC gives billions of dollars of ratepayer energy efficiency money to PG&E, Edison and SDG&E which they squander and only offer token rebates to customers and limit their choice of approved contractors. In contrast, energy efficiency money used by munucipal utility companies like SMUD is used for large discounts on more energy efficient air conditioners and a large choice of contractors. Giving out free lightbulbs is good PR for the private utility companies to give the illusion they are really pro energy efficient. The CPUC allows this to happen.

    • jerry

      Corporations don’t give a fig about shareholders. Corporations do what their boards dictate.
      Corporate officers are puppets, just like the muppets that think they “own” the corporations.

      Follow the control and not the money. Control is through the international banking/industrial/pharmaceutical/military cabal.

      Move up the food chain to that little wart in the southeastern corner of the Mediterranean Sea to view the true crux of the problem.

      We are given corporations and governments to complain to make sure that we don’t look behind the curtain at the operators of the levers and switches.

  • goedelite

    Editors: Please explain your statement, “He (Harvey Wasserman) was arrested at Diablo Canyon in 1984, and is likely to be back soon. Are we to understand that Mr Wasserman has been incarcerated since 1984? If so, I certainly would like to have him back!

    • ValZ

      No, he has not been incarcerated since 1984. They meant he is likely to go back to Diablo Canyon soon.

      • goedelite

        Really, ValZ! So that’s what the editor meant! So why didn’t he (or she) write what was meant? Rather poor work for an editor, don’t you think?
        I am unsubscribing.

        • ValZ

          I think it was rather poor interpretation by you.

          • goedelite

            You are clearly ignorant of what an editor’s job is. Your ignorance may extend further. Goodbye!

  • This world does not need any Nuking Power Plants. Once creatively and properly understood, The Natural Environment that supports ALL of US will provide ALL We Need. We can each Tune into a NUWay of Seeing and Recognizing What IS Always with US…. DUANE THE GREAT WRITER / THE NUPRESENTATION FOUNDATION / WORLDWIDE EDUCATORS

    • Scott Medwid

      Ok, replace the 8% wedge of nuclear power with something else and please show your math. That 8% is generated by 100 nuclear power plants that are 30 to 40 years old. There is a lot work to do Duane have a go at it.

  • goedelite

    I believe EcoWatch is a new website. A comments section is a good feature, but I do not believe that all comments are equal. The editor should, in my view, only present comments that are important in content and well written. By that standard, some of my comments might be excluded, but that is a price I am willing to pay. There are many forums that offer a platform for all comments. I want to read only the best. Selection is a primary editorial task. I should not be neglected.

  • Thomas DeSoto

    Noted journalist Harvey Wasserman tells it
    like it is,… The Nuclear Energy Industry are ruthless monsters who
    selfish greedy ideology is the epitome of pure evil in this world today.
    Placing millions of innocent people in jeopardy through-out Japan and
    the West Coast of America is reprehensible, but because of corrupt
    Judges they get away with these horrific crimes Scott Free,…

    • Dr. A. Cannara

      Wasserman! OMG, you do realize that every nuke scare piece he’s ever written has been discredited, right? You do realize that he gets $ from unsuspecting contributors who don’t realize he’s fibbing, right?

      But, let’s think a moment, over 430 nuke plants around the world ran while we were sleeping, with no explosions, no mass killings, eh? Same the night before; the day before; the week before; the month; the year… And no western nuke plant has ever killed any civilian via any accident.

      The EPA says we lose >12,000 Americans/year to coal emissions. We fried 8 and injured more from gas in 2010 just miles from here. We killed 2 a couple of years ago working on windmills. And so it goes.

      So, let’s get this straight, you’re trying to convince yourself and others that nukes are dangerous, but the stats don’t support that. Applying for a Fox News job?
      ;]

  • Scott Medwid

    Turning off nuclear power plants leads to burning more fossil fuels. Fossil fuels combustion when operating correctly release more radiation into the environment than all the nuclear power accisents combined. Cut nuclear, burn more fossil fuel it’s a fact. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/coal-ash-is-more-radioactive-than-nuclear-waste/

    • common sense

      look, it’s obvious you’re a corporate schill, but even so, you must at some point recognise that this argument is pointless and silly. None of us want more coal or climate change but the fact is that none of can get around Arne Gundersen’s “40 good years and one bad day” argument. And since Fukushima, we know that when the one bad day happens, it’s instant ecocide. It’s like spilling permanent ink of your shirt. There is no cleaning up. You can toss the thing. Only ecosystems are hard to toss if you need to survive in them. So frankly, even if a nuclear plant emits less carbon on its good days than a coal burning facility, that stands in absolutely no relation to what it does on its bad day. And the human population really DID get that point. So you’ve got a non-argument. How we can reduce coal is a separate issue. But it is no use to prescribe something that is worse than the disease and the general population Is clever enough to see that.

      • Scott Medwid

        I’m not working for any corporation, think tank or investment cartel, I’ve been an “on the ship” Greenpeace volunteer that got tired of the misinformation on nuclear power and learned a bit of science and engineering on the issue. Non fossil fuel energy production is the only way (short of massive planetary population reduction that I do not advocate) that will get ALL of humanity through the next few decades of climate destabilization. Fukushima Daichii was an old reactor design run by a company that did not listen to their own engineers on saftey matters. That being said it took a historically large eathquake, tsunami AND bad decisions by Tokyo political leaders to prevent venting of hydrogen to cause the machinery to blow up like the Hindenburg (another hydrogen explosion).
        I advocate for advanced reactors that do not use water as a coolant or moderator. Advanced reactors can make electricity and heat with reprocessed spent reactor fuel (I.F.R.) or breed Urainium 233 from Thorium 232 in an M.S.R.
        Look, we should all be working for non fossil fuel power world wide ASAP. Nuclear reactors provide Base Load power 24 hours a day 7 days a week and can do this for 40 good years as the old designs have proven as you say. I say let the evolved advanced reactors come on line and burn up the waste from the old machines and provide energy for everyone in league with solar, wind hydro and bio fuel. 40 good years. http://www.ThoriumRemix.com

    • CaptD

      More Solar (of all flavors) is being installed ever faster, at lower cost and it is also ever more efficient, which mean the using nuclear is rapidly becoming a thing of the past like ice boxes instead of refrigerators!

    • Dr. A. Cannara

      Exactly.

  • Scott Medwid
  • Josefine

    I am terrified of what might happen in an earth quake in that region and what the effect will be on the environment. California produces so much fruit and vegetables, almonds etc. All that would go, too poisonous to eat. Can you imagine what a Fukushima in this area would have? A tragedy and a disaster, not just for the local people and wild life, but also affecting the rest of us. Dreadful! Send a petition, I will sign it.

    • Go to SanOnofreSafety.org. to link to a petition.

  • Josefine

    I am stumped by how one can argue for nuclear power by saying we do not produce enough solar energy. We may not produce enough yet! I hope we never again go back to deploying something so toxic as nuclear power stations. Don’t give up. We have ingenious ways of creating positive and clean solutions for the future.

    • Scott Medwid

      This is the reality of energy generation last year in the US. how do you plan to replace fossil fuels and make up the 8% that nuclear power provided?

      • DavidKraft

        It’s astonishing that so many nuclear cheerleaders do not see that very huge fallacy in logic pointed out by Josefine: namely, that what IS, does not necessarily mean what CAN/SHOULD be. Ironically, Medwid answered his own question: you PLAN to replace the unwanted energy sources. And the corollary is: you don’t THWART the PLANNING by unproductive tangents like 4th gen reactors, mini-nukes, clean-coal and other energy BS designed purely to preserve the status quo, based on 19th Century technology.

        Somehow, we either planned or mandated away a lot of undesirable “what IS” systems: we don’t use slaves; we drive cars, not use horses and buggies; we don’t use clipper ships or Conestoga wagons anymore to transport goods; we don’t smoke on airplanes or in certain public places. You know — we EVOLVE, and make PLANS. There are numerous credible sources which have crunched the numbers and created the PLANS to get to a renewable energy society, somewhere between 2040 and 2050, not the least of which is the IPCC. It’s been the job of the fossil fuel industry, the Nuclear Energy Institute and other self-serving and interested entities to THWART those plans. THAT’S the reality, Scott.

        You also fail to consider energy conservation and efficiency at all. Like all good addicts, you only rely on and advocate for increased substance abuse, not appropriate reduction. Used to be that utilities swore on Bibles we’d need to grow production 7% a year, or face societal and economic collapse. The stats destroy that fairyland prediction, showing how our economy has vastly increased since the 1980s with essentially flat energy use. That’s what PLANNING can do.

        • Dr. A. Cannara

          David, you do realize that using caps is the mark of a weak arguer, right?

          But, this is good: ” unproductive tangents like 4th gen reactors, mini-nukes, clean-coal and other energy BS designed purely to preserve the status quo, based on 19th Century technology.”

          Somehow your logic in reading Scott is that he’s advocating “19th Century technology”? Really?

          How dumb do you think others here are, David?

          Do you not know from high school science that “renewable energy” is a marketing term from the “renewables” industry? Know why there are no true “renewables”, given conservation of energy?

          Do you grasp that anything subject to climate change isn’t ever ‘renewable’ in the marketing sense? Do you not know that hydro and wind are subject to climate? Maybe go look at our Colorado river dams, or China’s Three Gorges Dam, or some of China’s wind farms…

          http://spectrum.ieee.org/green-tech/wind/a-less-mighty-wind
          http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/21/us/21tttransmission.html?_r=1&hpw

          So, David, indeed adults have been “planning” for many years: http://tinyurl.com/6xgpkfa

          Just because you lack the humility to realize your science & engineering limits doesn’t mean what you say is useful.

          When you make uninformed anti-nuclear talk, you do exactly what the combustion industry has long wished. And, you indeed help polluters cause more disease & death. The attached pics illustrate how naive anti-nuke folks have been exploited over the years.

          So, David, somehow we’re to believe you to be wiser than a President & various Nobel folks & climate folks like James Hansen, Ken Cadeira, and even the Dalai Lama?…
          http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/03/world/nuclear-energy-climate-change-scientists-letter/
          http://blogs.wsj.com/japanrealtime/2011/11/07/dalai-lama-a-role-for-nuclear-power-in-development-process/

          Really David?

          • Naomi McCann

            He’s SHOUTING because peeps are NOT LISTENING.
            How about we change the language from ‘renewable’ to ‘cleaner’ or ‘safer’?
            Go ahead, talk about all the good that’s come out of Fukushima. Not blahing convincing.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            “cleaner”, Naomi? Sure, solar is cleaner if production chemistry is properly handled (I’m an engineer in Silicon Valley, so I know). Maybe you could learn by reading the facts: IEEE Spectrum, Sep 2014, “Solars Green Dilemma”. I love local solar, by the way.

            Wind is no cleaner than anything else, because it requires ~2000 tons of raw materials per average MW installed, and all those materials must be processed via fossil fuels — remember how coal is used to make steel, 4:1 by weight, and coal/gas is used to make cement, Naomi? Ever read a windmill data sheet?

            Why not actually read the ad up above that tricked Long Islanders in the /80s to think nuclear was dangerous and coal/oil not?. Attached below is one that kept Aussies nuke free, so they could burn coal/oil/gas and sell plenty to China today.

            “Good that’s come out of Fukushima”? Well, the Japanese have finally cleaned up their lousy regulator. Fukushima shows why nuclear power is unmatched for safety for all its 577-year history (2nd graphic attached). In its life, Fukushima Dai Ichi generated 898TWHrs of emissions-free energy. Doing that wiith coal/gas would have caused about 124,000 or about 38,000 Japanese to die, respectively.

            It’s amazing how anti-environmental & anti-factual some anti-nuke folks can be, eh Naomi? Sort of like climate deniers.
            ;]
            The Japanese know they can’t continue fossil fuel burning and can’t use wind/solar to avoid restarting their nuclear plants. For example:
            http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/RS-Final-restart-nears-approaches-for-Sendai-1009144.html
            .
            Isn’t it interesting that even corrupt TEPCO, with 17 reactors in the tsunami region, could only cause 3 to be ruied?
            ;]
            But Fukushima did illutartye booth the safety of old GE reactors shutting down properly and how to actually build a proper plant in that region…
            http://thebulletin.org/onagawa-japanese-nuclear-power-plant-didn%E2%80%99t-melt-down-311

            If you actually want facts upon which to make informed decisions, read the above snd this damning independent report…
            http://www.nirs.org/fukushima/naiic_report.pdf

            The Japanese govt. allowed >18,000 people to die in a known tsunami zone, but not because of nuclear power — an inconvenient truth for naive anti-nuke folks.
            Want to try with Chernobyl, Naomi? What was it Clint Eastwood liked to say? “Feeling lucky?”
            ;]

          • Joe Dick

            Beware of the even weirder than the shouter. I suggest that you look at the comments of each “individual’ before responding, and by the time you read this, I wonder if that particular account will still exist:

            Who is CaptD?

            “It” refuses to answer any questions.

            “it” even responds to websites with threads that haven’t been discussed in over a year.

            Human beings have multiple interests; CaptD has only one, which is decidedly anti-nuclear and pro-solar panel.

            Real people have multiple interests: The next iPhone, a discussion about a movie… Something… Please…

            Hey, I care about science and computing and airships, among other things. At least my Disqus account demonstrates that.

            This “it”, what ever “it” is, that can’t pass a Turing test by answering a single question…

            Pretty creepy, don’t y’all think?

            If “it” is an individual, so singly minded against nuclear powerplants, I do hope that person is on the FBI’s radar. That could be a threat to a lot of people, as single minded as this “individual” seems to be.

            If “it” is a bot or paid shill, Disqus should really be more careful, yes?

            Either way… very, very creepy.

            Yeah, my name is funny, but at least you can type in “Helium Hokum” and see a real person!

            Beware of entrance to a quarrel; it might turn out to expose nonsense you really don’t want to know exists…

            Cheers,
            Joe

          • Joe Dick

            One has to take these things in balance, Naomi. As the good Doctor points out, production chemistry has to be handled properly.

            No one wants a Fukushima, of course they don’t. When I was a kid, the errors of institutionalized engineering were a little more readily apparent for what they were and didn’t come down to a specific means of anything: Therefore, let me ask you, do you want a Three Mile Island or a Love Canal or a Ford Pinto? Not much of a choice, right? Me, I’d take Love Canal last, a Ford Pinto with it’s propensity to explode when rear-ended second, and give me Three Mile Island any day of the week by comparison – again, not that I want any of them.

            Here’s a funny thing. We did the calculation when I was in college. Which would you rather do: Live on the fence line of Three Mile Island during the year of the event, or attend a 3 credit hour class for a semester. Funny thing is, the three people in the row in front of you, the ones to your left and to your right, and the three in the row behind, have enough naturally occurring radioactivity from isotopes of potassium (eat Kelloggs’ “Special K”, for instance? K stands for kallium, the German for potassium), that a mere three credit hour class exposes you to more radioactivity than living in a house on the fence line of Three Mile Island.

            Weird huh? Strange but true. Don’t get me started on going to the beach for a weekend…

            If you want, I’ll dig out the physics and teach you the math.

            I know, you’ll think I’m lying. Oh well…

    • Dr. A. Cannara

      If you were an engineer or scientist, Jose, you’d grasp the reality that intermittent sources cause other investments to be expended, and other environmental impacts to be dealt to our planet.

      Local solar is fine. Solar/wind ‘farms’ not, both for environmental & engineering reasons.

      And we already ” have ingenious ways of creating positive and clean solutions for the future.” We’ve had them for years.

      • Joe Dick

        Dr. Cannara, do be careful:

        Who is CaptD?

        “It” refuses to answer any questions.

        “it” even responds to websites with threads that haven’t been discussed in over a year.

        Human beings have multiple interests; CaptD has only one, which is decidedly anti-nuclear and pro-solar panel.

        Real people have multiple interests: The next iPhone, a discussion about a movie… Something… Please…

        Hey, I care about science and computing and airships, among other things. At least my Disqus account demonstrates that.

        This “it”, what ever “it” is, that can’t pass a Turing test by answering a single question…

        Pretty creepy, don’t y’all think?

        If “it” is an individual, so singly minded against nuclear powerplants, I do hope that person is on the FBI’s radar. That could be a threat to a lot of people, as single minded as this “individual” seems to be.

        If “it” is a bot or paid shill, Disqus should really be more careful, yes?

        Either way… very, very creepy.

        Yeah, my name is funny, but at least you can type in “Helium Hokum” and see a real person!

        Beware of entrance to a quarrel; it might turn out to expose nonsense you really don’t want to know exists…

        Cheers,
        Joe

        • Dr. A. Cannara

          ;]

      • Joe Dick

        If you’ll forgive me for chiming in, Dr. Cannara, there is an interesting point of view which I would like to suggest to Josefine.

        It is very hard to argue for solar power at this point because the technology has not progressed to the point where it is economical enough to power solar panel factories with their own product.

        Solar power makes a great deal of sense in specific instances. The energy (fuel) required to make a solar panel for a satellite weighs less than the energy (fuel) a rocket has to carry into orbit that would power that satellite; so it makes sense to make a thing to collect energy in orbit instead of launch the energy. In rocketry, solar panels have “energy density” – i.e. they don’t weigh much compared to the energy it would take to launch equivalent fuel into orbit.

        I lived in Seattle, Washington for a while. They converted from the old-style parking meters to solar powered ones. I’m not exactly sure if that was an ecological choice. The old parking meters that ran like egg timers: You wind a spring and the energy from your hand us used to keep the time until the police can fine you.

        The new parking meters were electronic, and it was cheaper (less energy) to put solar panels on them than to dig trenches in the sidewalk and run wires to them. That part at least makes sense. Did they need to get rid of the old, working parking meters? Not really; but at least they made the right choice in terms of cost.

        The thing you need to realize is that every dollar you spend is energy in the end. 200 years ago, when we were mostly agricultural in America, energy was crops or fuel for our stoves. Now that we are primarily an energy-based economy, remember still that everything is still ultimately some sort of fuel.

        I once had a woman yell at me because I was driving a Hummer H3 – which was nothing more than a Colorado pickup truck. A little five cylinder motor, and all wheel drive, and I was going to the mountains with some snowboarding friends. Me, I preferred the hot tub and the fireplace. No matter. Anyway, I was just at the bank to get some cash for the weekend, and she cussed me out for “driving a hummer”. I responded as politely as I could, “Yes, madam, but this isn’t a military vehicle, and your BMW M3 gets the same gas mileage, cost twice as much, and your Prada purse and Gucci heels and every extravagance of gold and diamonds on your person all cost energy in the end, so you are worse for the environment than I am.”

        You see, you can cuss out the person driving an SUV, but that’s how that individual chooses to spend their money – which in an energy economy is all about BTUs and kilowatt hours in the end. That means they spent less money on suits and jewelry and they opt for t shirts and baseball caps.

        Anyway, I digress from your original question. Yes, we do not produce enough power from solar energy, in the sense that it would be nice, wouldn’t it? However, solar panels don’t yet make enough energy in their lifetimes to warrant taking a solar panel factory off the grid, and there are no windmill powered windmill factories. I guess that’s what the good Doctor was saying about being an engineer or scientist. I also hope I’ve answered the “local” solar question with my parking meter story.

        Now, the last bit is this, in terms of the intermittent nature of nature’s sources of power: Yes, we can have solar, yes we can have windmills; however, when the wind dies down or the clouds or rain comes, how do you power the grid? It takes hours to get a steam powered powerplant, well, up to steam. So, you can build all this lovely stuff, but then you still have to run the steam powered power station doing nothing in case the wind dies or the clouds come….

        Me, I’m not a fan of Al Gore. He’s been accused of claiming he invented the internet, yet he’s not smart enough propose using it for his cause. See, one of the “ingenious” things we have at our disposal is the internet; but it is seldom used for the productivity it could produce. Again, when I was in Seattle, the roads were clogged with cars. What do these people do? They go to work in cubicles in an office building mostly. What do they do there? Email each other, and occasionally talk on the phone. It begs the question: Why not simply not “go” to the office? Two car families could be one car families. The computer at home would get used all day, and there would be no need to have another at the office. No need to build more office buildings, and the ones we have could become housing. All of this is possible today, right now.

        So, as the good Doctor says, we’ve had ingenious ways of doing positive and clean things for years.

        Pity no one bothers with the obvious. 🙂

  • siquijorisland

    wow

  • siquijorisland

    this has to go on my wall of shame.
    An article by a discredited author.
    Yahoo shame on you for promoting disinformation as fact

    • CaptD

      Ha Ha Ha

      Name calling is so very LAME and it reminds me of another self-professed nuclear expert called Atoms4Peace1 that thought he knew everything until even the Japanese admitted that Fukushima really did suffer meltdowns.

      • siquijorisland

        “Name calling is so very LAME”
        take you own advice.
        why not use truth instead.
        Shame on you for not doing your homework and believing misinformation

        • CaptD

          It is not my fault that you don’t understand the difference between calling names and describing an activity!

          As far as “believing misinformation”:
          Are you claiming that Fukushima did not suffer multiple meltdowns?
          If so, then you should seek help.

          • siquijorisland

            If so, then you should seek help. ” name calling”
            As you have demonstrated with your fiction accounts things of things i have never said I’m going to declare you a wast of time.
            I now am ignoring you completely since you’ve just gone from bad to really unbelievable funny. Since you have proven that you can not engage in an adult, logical, honest, rational discussion with me or anyone on any topic do not wast my time..

          • CaptD

            Zzzzzzzzzz

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Shhhh, Cappy, it’ll all go away soon.
            ;]

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Keep digging, Cappy, there may still be a pony in there!
            ;]

  • Piratepacific

    What seems to be neglected post Fukushima is the role that the US Government agencies played in arm twisting the Japanese LDP to start nuclear generation in the face of immense citizen opposition (the “nuclear allergy”) back in the sixties and seventies. Hundreds of thousands of people demonstrating against nuclear power. Tepco undoubtedly responsible but it’s pretty appalling to see the US interests of Westinghouse and others and US Govt agencies being completely left off the hook.

    • CaptD

      Remember that Westinghouse is owned by the Japanese, so it is important to realize that the Japanese Nuclear Utility “Gangs” are actually the ones calling the shots in Japan.

      • Piratepacific

        Sold in 2007 to Toshiba. The pressure was applied by US Government agencies and Westinghouse in the sixties and seventies. The LDP was co-operative because they had to be, because there was big dirty money involved and also because they were keen to cure the “nuclear allergy”.

        • CaptD

          Piratepacific – Thanks for the additional info, have slink or two you might share?

          That is why I refer to the Japanese Nuclear Utility “Gangs” who will only further enriched themselves which increasing their control over the Japanese people with the “forever” decommissioning make work projects at Fukushima.

          This is why the Japanese are so eager to also become owners of nuclear power plants in other Countries like the UK, since each offers a 100 year income stream and holds the local ratepayers in Energy Slavery!

  • The nuclear waste created by Diablo Canyon continues to grow and is not contained safely. The thin 1/2″ stainless steel dry storage containers may crack within 30 years due to our coastal environment. How well will those containers hold up under an earthquake? We won’t even need an earthquake once the cracks start. And there is no current technology to inspect or repair them and no system in place to replace them at Diablo or at any other nuke plant in the country. There are better alternatives. We are fighting for this at San Onofre in Southern California.

    • CaptD

      Cast storage will be the next big “Issue” that the nuclear industry tries to pooh-pooh because they are focus yearly profits instead of our long term safety!

      • Dr. A. Cannara

        The term is “cask” Cappy, and if you actually knew some nuclear science, you’d know that 95% of what comes out of a reactor isn’t waste and can indeed be recycled as the French have done for decades, even for Japan, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, etc.

        Some inconvenient facts for you CaptD of the Good Ship Anonymous and Uninformed…
        http://tinyurl.com/kkmyhze (p7 & p21 on)
        http://tinyurl.com/mptejun (“France emits around 40 grams of CO2 per kwh. Germany, the US, Japan, and most other industrialized nations emit between 400 and 500 grams/kwh.”)

        And since you also appear willfully ignorant of what the 5% ‘waste’ actually is and why it’s safe to store in casks, in your backyard after a few years, see if you can learn some facts about Ma Nature and radioactive decay here…
        http://www.energyfromthorium.com/javaws/SpentFuelExplorer.jnlp

        Facts are inconvenient for anti-nukes, eh Cappy?
        ;]

        • CaptD

          This is more than enough ufo about the myth of trying to use Thorium:

          Sorry but Thorium is Borium… get the real facts not Thorium Nuclear Baloney* (NB)…

          Read: Thorium Nuclear Information Resources

          http://kevinmeyerson.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/thorium-nuclear-information-resources/

          * http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Nuclear+Baloney

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, this isn’t about thorium, but now we see you’ve been suckered by “urbandictionary” and NIR, which just parrots the long-discredited stuff at PSR and IEER.

            Really, Cappy?

            How about checking Makijani’s IEER IRS Form 990 to see how many $ he gives himself each year from ‘donations’? In 2012 he made over $150k more than in 2011, just from scaring folks about Fukushima. Nice work, eh?

            You do know stuff never goes away in the Internet, even junk, right Cappy?

            But Makijani, Meyerson, Caldicott… all make nice livings lying to everyone they can fool.

            If you want the actual scientific refutations of the junk you quoted above, just give a call Cappy.
            ;]
            650 400 3071

  • California has a 30 to 40 percent surplus of energy according to CPUC data, so we’re living with this risk for a nuke plant we don’t even need. California can shut it down now due to the large damage it’s currently doing to marine life.

  • CaptD

    Earthquakes are credible threats, which Fukushima proved to mankind all to well!

    Even the head NRC inspector has voiced serious concerns (and written a 50 page document) about Diablo Canyon not being operated within its earthquake design specifications.

    The Fukushima disaster is a perfect example of a case where something like a meltdown with a once per 100,000 years probably not only occurred, but occurred 3 times in less than a week!

    Pro-Nuclear proponents have no fear of nuclear going BAD, but we all know that, after watching the ☢ dog and pony show at Fukushima. It is past time to idle Diablo Canyon and either get the proper NRC documents modified after rigorous testing or begin decommissioning it ASAP.

  • Katleena Toms

    Where’s the petition… i will sign it.

  • Graham Spink

    We all should be following the sensible German example …. Maybe they are not corrupted by the powerful multinational companies ….

  • Dr. A. Cannara

    As usual we have the fibs, like “Fukushia” & “Diablo” in the same sentence. California now emits more CO2 simply because closing San Onofre for no good reason has caused us to burn more coal at plants like Navaho Generating station and even causing more gas to be burned. remember what gas did in San Bruno?. Remember how many windmills in Altamont have killed?

    Is that absurdity really what folks here who say they’re environmentalists want?

    Fukushima, an inconvenient truth I know, was poorly designed and known to be vulnerable to tsunami for years. Diablo Canyon is 140+ feet above sea level, with no subduction faults withing hundreds of miles, and it has its own Independent Safety commission of experts.

    If one wants to respect our descendants, then facts need to be what direct us,, not panderings by Wasserman, Caldicott, Grossman, Gundersen, etc. to anti-nuclear people who seem happy to be fooled.

    Wasserman, Gundersen et al seem unhappy that naive suggestions of fuel rods touching and burning as Fukushima was cleaned up didn’t happen. We only need look at some of these folks’ IRS filings to see how much $ they’ve made off such Fukushima fibbery. Makijani (IEER) himself made over $150,000 more in 2012 in “salary” taken from contributions than he did before the year of Fuklushima.

    How about showing your IRS forms, Harvey? I’ll show mine.

    We owe our descendants study and wisdom in our actions. Nuclear power has always been the safest form of generation, yet, like spoiled children, some of us don’t bother to study such realities. Instead, we foolishly support yellow journalism, like this piece and these editors. If one has adult responsibility, one looks to find root causes of bad events. The root cause of Fukushima was not nuclear power…
    http://thebulletin.org/onagawa-japanese-nuclear-power-plant-didn%E2%80%99t-melt-down-311
    http://www.nirs.org/fukushima/naiic_report.pdf

    Fortunately, unlike this article and this site, there are adults in the room. And the inconvenient truth for blind anti-nukes, or for-profit anti-nukes, is that honest scientists know the essential value of nuclear power to our kids’ futures…
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/03/world/nuclear-energy-climate-change-scientists-letter/

    Even including the Dalai Lama…
    http://blogs.wsj.com/japanrealtime/2011/11/07/dalai-lama-a-role-for-nuclear-power-in-development-process/

    Confused? Call 650 400 3071

    Some safety refs…
    http://tinyurl.com/42wvr9l (1998)
    http://www.unis.unvienna.org/unis/en/pressrels/2013/unisinf475.html (2013 Fukushima)
    http://cen.acs.org/articles/91/web/2013/04/Nuclear-Power-Prevents-Deaths-Causes.html
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2012/06/10/energys-deathprint-a-price-always-paid/
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-human-cost-of-energy
    http://www.wano.info//article.cfm?id=the-human-cost-of-energy
    http://www.thoriumremix.com (2nd video graphic)
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/?term=10.1289/ehp.1104294

    Interesting emissions facts…
    http://tinyurl.com/mptejun (“France emits around 40 grams of CO2 per kwh. Germany, the US, Japan, and most other industrialized nations emit between 400 and 500 grams/kwh.”)

    • CaptD

      Dr. A. Cannara Your statement ” because closing San Onofre for no good reason” is completely false and shows that you don’t have any idea about what you are talking about especially about San Onofre, which has become a multi-billion dollar engineering boondoggle that put Southern California at risk of a nuclear incident or perhaps even a nuclear accident.

      Please get educated before you post falsehoods, it just makes those that post them look silly:

      http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2014/sep/05/ticker-san-onofre-settlement-unfair-ratepayers/

      PLUS

      Even the top NRC Inspector thinks Diablo Canyon needs to be shut down until it is proven that it is operating safely!

      Secret Internal Document Urging Closure of California Nuclear Plant Revealed

      http://shar.es/11SDmJ

      • Dr. A. Cannara

        Captain my Captain, you might want to correct your misinformed view that the complainer at Diablo was a “top NRC inspector”. But, I guess just as you hide your real name, you’re willing to hide facts from others here. Here are some facts…
        http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2014/09/11/regulators-affirm-quake-safety-for-last-operating-nuclear-plant-in-calif/

        Since you aren’t an engineer or scientist, you might not also get why the title of this piece: “California’s Fukushima” is a great way to explain to youngsters the old meaning of “yellow journalism”. As Mark Twain said: “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on”.

        Well, boots are on, since my oath , as a scientist & engineer is to the truth and public benefit. Yours, apparently not.

        Fukushima demonstrates the safety of regulated western nuclear power. Which this site and you seem to view as an inconvenient truth, getting in the way of snaring readers, donatons, etc.

        So, some basic facts about San Onofre — it’s many hundreds of miles from any subduction fault and thousands from any like the Tohoku fualt that raised the tsunami at Fukushima. See, California faults are slip faults, which do very little lifting, but lots of sliding now and then. Diablo Canyon is designed to handle a 7.5 quake and is over 100ft above sea level. The highest tsunami in the world’s geologic record is far shorter.

        Unlike Fukushima’s TEPCO plants, our NRC insists that emergency power is protected, much as Onagawa’s was — an inconvenient truth for Fukushima scare artists like you and this site…

        http://thebulletin.org/onagawa-japanese-nuclear-power-plant-didn%E2%80%99t-melt-down-311

        We who serve the public insist on finding root causes of failures. Apparently, you don’t, which is odd for someone advertizing himself as a “Captain” responsible for command. No matter, the above link explains the root cause of Fukushima Dai-Ichi’s failure, and illuminates what needs doing & checking elsewhere.

        Another inconvenient truth for anti-nukes is that even miserably corrupt TEPCO had 17 reactors in the region and only 3 melted. Amazing, eh? Fukushima Dai-Ini, with 4 reactors running also survived, despite receiving similar flooding. And, if you want what independent scientists had to say, read on… http://www.nirs.org/fukushima/naiic_report.pdf

        So, indeed Fukushima Dai Ichi’s failure was ma made and avoidable under proper regulation, and the natural event was well documented in history and warned of by many hand-carved “tsunami memorial” stones all around the region (see pic). Unfortunately, Japan’s old NISA was nothing like our NRC. And, San Onofre is nothing like Fukushima, and is built in a locale nothing like the Japanese subduction zone.

        But, CaptD, you and this site seem happy to cause coal & gas to be burned for the equivalent of about 2 million homes that San Onofre has long served. Will you explain to folks downwind of The Navaho Generating Station, or The Four Corners Station that you’re sorry your naive anti-nuclear bias might make them and their kids sick?

        Will you and this site continue to pretend nuclear power is dangerous, despite the facts? If so, you all disqualify yourselves as environmentalists and join the ranks of propagandists Sam Clemens warned of.

        Dr. A. Cannara
        650 400 3071 (call if confused)

        Some safety refs…
        http://tinyurl.com/42wvr9l (1998)
        http://www.unis.unvienna.org/unis/en/pressrels/2013/unisinf475.html (2013)
        http://cen.acs.org/articles/91/web/2013/04/Nuclear-Power-Prevents-Deaths-Causes.html
        http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2012/06/10/energys-deathprint-a-price-always-paid/
        http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-human-cost-of-energy
        http://www.wano.info//article.cfm?id=the-human-cost-of-energy
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/?term=10.1289/ehp.1104294

        • CaptD

          Dr. A. Cannara – Forget the name calling and realize that San Onofre’s replacement steam generators suffered from poorly design as specified by SCE’s own CA Licensed engineers that signed off on the design; intact Unit 3 (the one that leaked) actually suffered Fluid Elastic Instability (FEI) which had never before been observed in a US nuclear steam generator, and even SCE (the operator) now admits it, so for you to say (AGAIN) that ” because closing San Onofre for no good reason” is completely false and shows that you don’t have any idea about what you are talking about”…

          ps. Read the link supplied above to find out more about the SCE design debacle that resulted in San Onofre having more steam generator tube damage than all the rest of the US nuclear fleet combined despite the fact that Unit 2 was almost 2 years old and Unit 3 was less than one year old.

          http://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/steamgeneratortubespluggedbyageandsanonofresteamgeneratorproblems2012-11-03.pdf

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            CaptD, seems you’re the one “calling names”, of yourself, since you haven’t apparently the gumption to use a real name.

            No matter. When you car’s battery dies, do you worry about how many of its cells are bad, and if ‘too many’ to suit you, you sell your car?

            So, thanks for dropping terms to make you look like you know something engineering-wise, but the San Onofre problem could have, and still can, be fixed for less than the >$4B now estimated to create yet another monument to naive Calif. enviro politics.

            Here’s an example…

            “Davis-Besse nuclear power plant is operating again after undergoing a $600 million upgrade.
            FirstEnergy spent the last 3 months replacing the two original steam generators at the plant near Toledo.”…
            http://www.newsnet5.com/news/local-news/oh-cuyahoga/davis-besse-nuclear-power-plant-is-operating-again-after-undergoing-a-600-million-upgrade or: http://tinyurl.com/mem8lhq

            Davis-Besse is now eliminating some coal plants’ emissions and will pay for its repairs in less than a year.

            You apparently don’t care that ~2 million Calif. homes are now powered by coal & gas emissions. Nor do you seem to care that we waste over %4B ruining something that our descendants would like to depend on.

          • CaptD

            Dr. A. Cannara –

            1) Sad how you claim to be a scientist yet you gloss over all the data I posted to back up what I said, then try and change the conversation. What are you scared of, learning that San Onofre will be used in every future steam generator design class from now on (just like the Takoma Narrows Bridge is) to illustrate how things can go horribly wrong when engineers fail to take all factors into consideration? You want to talk about San Onofre, read the NRC documents (I and others have not only read them but submitted a large number of responses to the NRC about them) and then perhaps you will not look foolish by claiming that they “shut down San Onofre for no good reason”. Hint: Even the Operator SCE decided on decommissioning San Onofre because it made more economic sense to do that than trying to repair it , which is in part because Southern California started installing clean and safe Solar which made San Onofre’s generation no longer needed since CA now has extra capacity which is growing daily as more Solar (of all flavors) comes online.

            2) BTW: Using a pen name has nothing to do with “gumption”, but it does protect one from name calling, especially by Pro Nuclear posters that think that having one or more advanced degrees makes them all knowing which as we now know did not work out so well when all the Japanese Experts, (most of which had one or more advanced degrees) failed to protect the planet from the triple meltdowns in Fukushima because they all thought they could out engineer Nature. They were wrong, because Fukushima proved that Nature can destroy any land based nuclear reactor, any place anytime 24/7 and just because it has not yet happened is no guarantee that it will not happen many times tomorrow or even next week.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Oh Cappy, you play the victim just like a climate denier!

            Everyone here can see how you avoid facts, such as that the nuclear & generator sides of San Onofre have no issue and that the plant is in fact fixable for far less than the decommissioning $ billions you wish to inflict on us all.

            Wonder why you didn’t spend time contacting Ohio’s Davis-Besse folks to explain why steam problems invalidate an entire power plant?

            Agai, all here can see you’re quite happy to increase coal & gas emissions an dangers to all in & out of our state.

            You certainly avoided all the inconvenient facts raised.

            You do a far better job of undercutting your words than anyone could wish.

            By the way, should you ever need competent medical help, be sure to ask for medicos who have no “advanced degrees”and treatments that weren’t developed by any similar folk.
            ;]

          • CaptD

            Dr. A. Cannara – So now it is “guilt by association” with your latest claim:

            “you play the victim just like a climate denier!”

            and

            “Agai, all here can see you’re quite happy to increase coal & gas emissions an dangers to all in & out of our state.

            You certainly avoided all the inconvenient facts raised, while at the same time completely leaving out all the new Solar (of all flavors) that has been installed in California (in the years since San Onofre started leaking radiation on 01/31/12) that have nothing to do with your claim of me advocating increase coal and gas use.

            plus, there is this pearl of wisdom from you:

            “You do a far better job of undercutting your words than anyone could wish.”

            I have stated factual information and the links to back what I’ve posted while you continue to spread what I call Nuclear Baloney* or just NB*.

            The truth is San Onofre is now being decommissioned because its operator SCE realized they created a hugely expensive multi-billion dollar design debacle and figured that their shareholders would suffer less if they decommissioned San Onofre than if SCE had to disclose exactly what they did in order to try and get a new pair of replacement steam generators past the NRC inspection process, since Region IV of the NRC, is no longer as cozy with SCE as they were before the San Onofre debacle spread egg on everyones face, including SCE, SDG&E, the CPUC, MHI, the NRC and even the NRC’s Senate oversight Comm. since they all were implicated in some way or another.

            You want to try and say any of this is not factual then post the links to prove it.

            * http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Nuclear+Baloney

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, again you make it too easy…

            a) SCE is a business, just like any other, so if they decide their past mistake is too expensive for their interests, that’s their business. But, when it comes to clean power, for millions, provided by one facility, there’s more than the corporate interest to be considered. That should be familiar to all here, because that’s the common anti-industry theme here. So, indeed you are ok with burning more coal & gas, endangering folks in known ways.

            b) Solar, sure, local solar is fine, as you know I’ve long said. and you should know that large soalr ‘farms’ are un-environmental as well as inefficient, as Ivanpah exemplifies… SF Chronicle page 1, 7 Sept. and .
            http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2014/09/preventing-bird-deaths-at-solar-power-plants-part-1?cmpid=WNL-Friday-September12-2014
            http://ct.smartplanet.com/clicks?t=1382859909-4238fcfe71114c80e048b7bb266853ca-bf&brand=SMARTPLANET&s=5

            And, of course, we know, even if you don’t, the misserable reality of German solar., as explained by Germans & Swiss (not a blog)…
            http://www.finadvice.ch/files/germany_lessonslearned_final_071014.pdf
            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/10577513/Germany-is-a-cautionary-tale-of-how-energy-polices-can-harm-the-economy.html
            http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/news/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-in-2013.pdf

            So again, Cappy, when your car battery dies, you’ll dump the car, right? Promise?

            ;]

          • CaptD

            More ☢ Crapola from a self proclaimed experts that can’t seem to get the facts straight. San Onofre would have cost the Operator SCE Billions if they opened themselves up for a public investigation about their SCE RSG design debacle. If you challenge that, then you are really mis-informed.

            BTW: TheCar battery is a poor analogy since San Onofre has already cost ratepayers multi-Billions.

            A far better analogy would be if you catch your chauffeur ripping you off in a big maintenance scam, would you trust them to not do it again and then buy them a very expensivenew car? Ha Ha Ha, not even a pro ☢ like you would be that stupid unless you were in cahoots with the chauffeur., which I hope is not the case.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, you’re fast with numbers, eh, but slow with science & facts.

            San Onofre’s “billions” spent fixing it would be recouped, regardless of who funded it.

            You’re cute in hiding that reality, but you can’t hide the reality that the now estimated $4.4 billion to ruin the plant permanently would never be recouped, much as Schwarzenegger’s $4B DMV fee reductions were never recouped and cost our state dearly, particularly in the education realm, where it seems you could indeed benefit by more study.

            So yes,, the car-battery analogy works well ,even if the car is a Tesla.
            ;]
            Keep trying Cappy, this is fun!

          • CaptD

            DorkA , Since you refuse to use my name and use Cappy instead. 🙂

            The billions wasted are because SCE in-house design team screwed up big time and nothing you can say will make that debacle go away.

            RE: “Keep trying” ==> As Yoda said (and many before him), “There is NO try…”

            You are simply trying (unsuccessfully) to make San Onofre seem far better than it is, which is a disgrace to all those that trusted SCE to manage San Onofre properly.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            :] ;] ;]
            So you really are afraid of name calling, eh Cappy, you old “Dork”-meister!?

            Whether the “SCE in-house design team screwed up ” or not is irrelevant, but saying what you did reveals you don’t bother with grasping inconvenient details, like that the modelling software used by Mitsubishi was in error.

            So, again, you seem perfectly willing for every man, woman & child in Calif. to pay an unrecoverable $125 (at latest estimation) rather than invest in repairs that return over $1.5 billion each year.

            Your math reminds me of Uncle Vinnie’s, but at least he paid for it in federal pen.
            ;]
            Keep trying Cappy!

          • CaptD

            DorkA – Ok DorkA it is from now on, since it seems to fit you!

            RE: “the modeling software used by Mitsubishi was in error.”

            HA-HA-HA, you say that you are an expert but do not understand enough mechanical engineering to be able to understand the technical NRC reports that found so many problems with the RSG project, not just the only one that SCE could point out in order to try to shift some of the blame to MHI’s software.

            You also failed to read all the published info that points out that SCE’s engineers were in charge of the joint SCE-MHI RSG design team and more importantly SCE instructed MHI to build the RSG as specified, in order to avoid the lengthily full design review by the NRC, choosing instead to claim “like for like” replacements, while at the same time making a huge number of changes to the RSG.

            Here is an excellent article, published in a nuclear trade journal where both SCE & MHI engineers brag about all the changes they got away with at San Onofre, sadly it was published just weeks before San Onofre Unit 3 RSG started to fail and leak radiation.

            Improving like-for-like RSGs (The title says it all, ==> Nuclear Karma).

            https://s3.amazonaws.com/s3.documentcloud.org/documents/347889/col-nrc-tech-paper.pdf

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy ol’ boy, the result is what matters — you want each of us to waste over $120 that we never see again, rather than spend less and generate revenue.

            Remember what the economic difference is, Cappy? Remember the difference between “liability” and “investment”, Cappy?

            By the way, when will you be flying to Ohio to explain why First Energy shouldn’t have been allowed to fix the heat exchangers in Davis-Besse?

            Probably not before you man up & use a real name, eh Cappy?
            ;]

          • CaptD

            DorkA –

            RE: “each of us to waste over $120”, NOT FACTUAL, since all that should be paid for by SCE and their Utility partners) since SCE failed to design the RSG properly. If the CPUC makes ratepayers pay any part of that loss then the CPUC is also to blame for being to cozy with the Utilities they regulate as has been mentioned in many stories lately.

            San Onofre has only been a good investment for the Utilities and their shareholders not the ratepayers, since SCE promised a billion dollar savings and failed to deliver causing a multi-billion dollar design debacle instead.

            I’ve have no plans to travel to meet with First Energy but know others that have offered suggestions that should be reviewed.

            BTW: Name have no place in these comments since they don’t matter.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            So Cappy, where does SCE get its $? Any way you can explain how whatever it spends didn’t come from customers or state funds that come from us folks?

            Thought not.

            And any way you can explain how Calif. burning more coal & gas to create more pollution to affect everyone makes sense?

            Thought not.

            So will you please call Ohio and get over there ASAP to explain how wrong they were to fix Davis-Besse and eliminate some coal plants?

            Please, Cappy. We depend on your engineering knowledge and finely tuned ethical nature.
            ;]

          • CaptD

            DorkA –
            Guess you are as poor at business math as you are at engineering!

            I’ll try and make it so simple that even you can understand it:

            SCE (The major operator of San Onofre) gets its money from ratepayers that must pay them for the energy that SCE supplies at rates approved by the CPUC. If SCE does a poor job of operating San Onofre, then what ratepayers must pay goes up, since the CPUC has a track record of favoring what is good for SCE (and their shareholders that have been earning 5-8% on their investments over the last few years) instead of what is good for ratepayers, which is why southern California now has some of the highest priced energy in the USA, despite having some of the best weather in the USA!

            If the CPUC had listened to me, (I was the first one to tell the CPUC publicly that San Onofre would never be restarted) then all the time and money they wasted after Unit 3 started leaking could have been used to make it easier for all their ratepayers to install solar rooftops, which would have not only reduced the energy load used in southern California but also helped reduce the green house gases as now required by CA State law for the next 30-50 years.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, again you defeat your own arguing, perhaps because you didn’t make out on SCE dividends. The $ dividends are paid with comes from customers.

            So, again, you fail to explain how the $4.4B estimated to ruin San Onofre will not be $ we have all, at one time or another, paid in.

            Keep it up Cappy. This is fun!

          • CaptD

            DorkA

            RE: ” The $ dividends are paid with comes from customers.” (sic)

            Sure and if the Operator SCE create a multi-billion dollar debacle like they did at San Onofre they want all their ratepayers to pay it, not their shareholders!

            Why, because in their minds, their shareholders should only reap benefits, where ratepayers should pay for all costs, including SCE profits for their shareholders!

            If you think that is fair then I bet you also sell ☢ bridges

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, you again show all here you just can’t bear to admit where SCE got its $, and you just can’t man up to the fact you want us all to waste $120 on ruining a clean-energy plant.

            Keep trying, Cappy! There must be a pony somewhere in all that manure you’ve piled up!
            ;]

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Cappy, Cappy, Cappy. Where do the utilities get their $? Is that a mystery to you?

            Doesn’t matter if they already have the $4.4 billion now estimated to ruin San Onofre, they got it from all of us.

            So, just say it, as in an AA meeting, you want everyone to pay $120 for nothing.

            Everyone else here can see your wriggling. But here’s an idea, when ruined, we’ll start a movement to put up a plaque at the site, saying something like: “This mess brought to you by CaptD”. Sound good? Has your ‘real’ name.
            ;]

          • Joe Dick

            Oh look, it’s CaptD again…. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ <note that it's all caps.

          • Joe Dick

            Hey Dr. Cannara, Isn’t it interesting that CaptD is a paid for shill for anti clean energy from nuclear power? The best thing anyone can do is go to “its” Disqus page to figure that out! Page after page after page of one topic alone. I thought that Disqus was supposed to be about the exchange of ideas; who knew they’d let such an obvious paid-for shill go on and abuse the free exchange of ideas. I’ts probably not even a “person”… How else could I make a comment on a discussion that was over a year old only to be accosted by this “individual”.

            CaptD, you have all the appearances of a person paid to sit at a desk and invade free discussion with junk science.

            Ladies and gentlemen, let’s run this supported con artist off of Disqus. No human being could possibly be as single topic as this faker.

          • Joe Dick

            Shill. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ in all caps. 😛

          • Joe Dick

            Hey Dr. Cannara, Isn’t it interesting that CaptD is a paid for shill for anti clean energy from nuclear power? The best thing anyone can do is go to “its” Disqus page to figure that out! Page after page after page of one topic alone. I thought that Disqus was supposed to be about the exchange of ideas; who knew they’d let such an obvious paid-for shill go on and abuse the free exchange of ideas. I’ts probably not even a “person”… How else could I make a comment on a discussion that was over a year old only to be accosted by this “individual”.

            CaptD, you have all the appearances of a person paid to sit at a desk and invade free discussion with junk science.

            Ladies and gentlemen, let’s run this supported con artist off of Disqus. No human being could possibly be as single topic as this fake.

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Thanks Joe, but I don’t mind, because folks/machines like CaptD allow honest facts to come out for others listening in to see.

          • Joe Dick

            I appreciate your tenacity! Quite frankly, whatever “it” is I was a bit more than perplexed when “it” started stalking me for bringing up basic science and couldn’t respond other than to “respond”.

            Given our inadvertent introduction, I would love to have a discussion about climate denial, but only because as an aerospace engineer I would love to lay my hands on the raw data to which one could apply statistical analysis. Any chance you know how one can get ahold of the unadulterated input?

            In my field, people live and die in the now if things are got wrong. In science, one can check another’s data and calculation. It is hard to be an “accepter” without access to such data and the analyses by which such were reduced to a conclusion.

            Anyway, this silly “person” that refuses to engage in enlightened discussion. Pardon my ire for tracking the troll to its lair!

            All the best in honest and scientific exchange,

            Joe Dick

            PS, do give my little effort at Carl Sagan/James Burke a look-see if you like. I’m airship.guru Thanks for a friendly tone in this madness I helped create called the internet (that’s another story, of course…)

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Joe, the Internet was designed to be faulty. As Vint Cerf (a main Internet designer) said in an interview a while back, when asked about all the insecurity/identity problems the Internet design has wrought: “I’d do it differently.”

            Thanks Vint! You were told by various scientists in the early ’80s that the Internet’s communications protocols were insecure, inefficient and needed redesign. To quote Rick Perry: “Oops”.
            ;]

          • Joe Dick

            Oh, well there I have to differ: The ARPANET was designed to endure faults in order to ensure delivery of missile launch codes; hence every message you type tends to go through multiple nodes and is readily intercepted. That was the point; blow up a number of nodes and the launch codes still get to the silo.

            Back in the early 80s, Purdue, we all sought to open it up for communication and exchange of ideas. It was great fun to “finger” the coke machine at Carnegie Mellon – the world’s first internet device, not that coffee pot everyone reads about. Back then, however, there were barriers to entry, and not just any person could get on their phone and pontificate, let alone harass others with propaganda.

            The internet in general, and, for instance, Disqus and Wikipedia in specific, need transparency protocols. I know this may sound strange in an era concerned with surveillance and privacy, but it’s only fair, in discussions of merit, that the individuals step forward and say who they are. I want to know who I’m talking with (operative word “with”, not “at” or “to”) so that I can gear my language appropriately. I want to understand the crotchety old fart and attempt to drag him out of his rut, and I want to be amazed at the genius of a young mind – or vice-versa, as the case may be.

            Inevitably, “they” know who we are and what we are saying to each other; yet we remain faceless to one another. To me, that is rather worse than Orwellian, and smacks more of Kurt Vonnegut.

            In the early 1980s we had such discussions; but there were barriers to entry, as I mentioned above. In that regard, I wonder what Vint would do differently. Would Bob Kahn do it differently as well, I wonder, and if so, what?

            I do know Philo Farnsworth regretted his primary role in the creation of electronic television. I can’t say as I blame him. We are responsible, ultimately, for how we use the tools provided to us.

            As Jacob Bronoowski reminded us of the response of his friend Leo Szilard: “I have been asked whether I would agree that the tragedy of the scientist is that he is able to bring about great advances in our knowledge, which mankind may then proceed to use for purposes of destruction. My answer is that this is not the tragedy of the scientist; it is the tragedy of mankind.”

            I wonder what Szilard would make of the internet in terms of its ability to advance knowledge. Gutenberg kept the ability to make movable type to himself, and even then one had to pony up for a printing press or time at it. This medium of exchange, may very well be the downfall of us all… 🙂

          • Dr. A. Cannara

            Joe, yes ARPANET was designed to be secure and the military has always had an off-limits network.

            The Internet, however, was designed by Cerf’s grad students and they thought it should be free & open to all, so their ideas missed the reality of basic security — source identity.

            That was always available in networking products corporations, etc. could buy, because it could be based on the unique 48-bit ID every piece of network hardware has — its Ethernet, Token Ring, LocalTalk, DECNET… MAC address.

            The Internet designers had no concept of the physical network level, since they used Unix-based minicomputers with independent phone-line connections among them. So the Internet software jockeys never knew where a network packet came from for sure — it just had an IP address in it, and that address was editable by anyone.

            Until the Internet protocols became free, we were safe. Once TCP/IP came free on Apples as well as Unix boxes, and later PCs, we were in trouble.

            There’s been a move afoot for a few years to restore the concept of source ID by enforcing MAC-address registration at the 1st switch interface, but that’s gone nowhere.

            So the stuff connected to the Internet is vulnerable by intention and the only defense is to use proprietary networks, as the military, Google, etc. are wont to do.

            Or, one could find old copies of Novell Netware, or AppleTalk and thumb a nose at the Internet!

            It used to be safe that way — only 1 “gateway” machine connected the corporate net to the Internet.

            If you want to be really disgusted with Cerf’s grad students and the IETF, just read about “DNS poisoning”.
            ;]

  • Martin Washington

    GO SOLAR!

    • CaptD

      The ☀ future is ours to see… CaptD

  • yog_sothoth

    So, more explosive natural gas then? Nuclear power frightenes people but natural gas pipelines actually kill people.

  • Anonymous

    If there was a nuclear meltdown event on the West Coast that required tons of water would they tell the public?

    • Cynical Observer

      They would tell the public “Move away”. That’s part of the state government’s wish list.

  • Thomas DeSoto

    The Nuclear Energy Industry is a bunch of thieving monsters who should
    all be in jail for crimes against humanity, but thanks to corrupt
    Republicans in Congress they are protected and rewarded with billions of
    taxpayer dollars to destroy our environment. The radiation from
    Fukushima is destroying the entire Northern Hemisphere of all life on
    earth, in our oceans and on the land for thousands of years to come,
    yet no one has ever been held responsible for these crimes. Like BP in
    the Gulf whose oil continues to wash up along the shore today, no one is
    ever held responsible for crimes against the environment, leaving this
    for future generations to solve. Why build nuclear reactors when no one
    can figure out what to do with all the waste water collecting each
    day,…? Trolls like these fool on the internet hired by the Heritage Foundation think they
    have it all figured out, but after three years of Fukushima and fifty
    years of Chernobyl leaking into the environment with no results to
    contain these disasters, logic would conclude that self-serving greedy
    corporate interest trumps all morality in our society today.

  • Scott Medwid

    This is an information sheet from the Energy Information Agency. Take a look at the wedges and see where energy came from in 2013 in the US. The Blue wedge is nuclear power, It provided 8% of total energy in the form of electricity generation (20% of US total). There have been no releases in the US. The Fukushima reactors were 1960’s machines. Moderen reactors are much better. Read “Thorium: Energy Cheaper Than Coal” by Robert Hargraves, you’ll learn something, I promise.

  • Scott Medwid

    Who hates Atomic Power more than Harvey Wasserman and Helen Caldecott? The fossil fuel industry. Only nuclear power can replace grid level electrical base load power generation.

    • CaptD

      This comment is full of logic holes because both Nuclear and Coal are not good for the environment or our own health.

      Base Load is a Utility myth, used to guarantee maximum profits to the Utility.
      For example: Natural Gas fired turbines can provide energy at low cost when needed and then be turned off quickly, something that Nuclear generation cannot do, plus there is no nuclear waste or ☢ to worry about!

      Clean Solar (of all flavors) can replace both Nuclear and Coal and we should make the switch ASAP

      Big Nuclear & Big Coal are both just thinking about their own Energy market share, not their workers futures. Remember Nuclear is a 100 year money generator for Big Utilities and guarantees that their ratepayers remain in Energy Slavery. Solar offers a path toward Energy Freedom (after initial payback) so think ahead before you support either Big Nuclear or Big Coal.

    • Cynical Observer

      I’m a coal miner’s grandchild, and if the coal industry shut down, I would not shed a tear.

    • CaptD

      Here are two more factual reasons to stop using BOTH Coal and Nuclear:
      Want to save 70 million birds a year? Build more wind farms
      http://reneweconomy.com.au/2012/want-to-save-70-million-birds-a-year-build-more-wind-farms-18274

  • CaptD

    Petition site to close Diablo Canyon – Please sign and then share

    Sign the petition to the @NRC: Shut down the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant http://share.credoaction.com/56137868t?referring_akid=.1643776.JiILq8 #p2 #nuclear

  • Cynical Observer

    All of the State of California’s and its cities, counties and other public agencies earthquake planning and civil engineering designs are based upon ONLY considering “active faults” which are those which have moved in the last 11,000 years. That number makes a lot of real estate owners, developers and self-interested public officials very angry, because they call the 11,000 year figure “a ridiculous standard”.

    However, the recent Napa Valley earthquake has been widely reported to have occurred on a fault which had not moved for 1.2 Million to 1.5 Million years. That fact alone is significant and eye opening in terms of the naivete of California public policy on earthquake issues.

    However, even more significant is the fact that research by the Federal government, the State of California, the University of California, California Institute of Technology (CalTech) and University of Southern California (USC) geology/seismology professionals, undertaken as a result of other major earthquakes in Calfornia, after the 1994 Northridge Earthquake, found that earthquake faults work like electrical lines, with seismic energy running from one fault into another and traveling at significant distance, and in many cases with seismic energy jumping between nearby but disconnected faults. In essence, the earthquake faults where the epicenter of a quake is NOT located, still transmit seismic energy (causing resulting shaking) just like a power line transmits electrical energy.

    As a result, sane people would look at all of the faults, ancient or recent, anywhere near Diablo Canyon, because it is that seismic “powerline network” which will ultimately cause far more damage than any of the outsider geologists and seismologists hand picked by NRC and PG&E could possibly imagine.

    • CaptD

      Great Comment.

      You might like this one:

      The Fukushima disaster is a perfect example of a case where something like a meltdown with a once per 100,000 years probably not only occurred, but occurred 3 times in less than a week!

      Pro-Nuclear proponents have no fear of nuclear going BAD, but we all know that, after watching the ☢ dog and pony show at Fukushima. It is past time to idle Diablo Canyon and either get the proper NRC documents modified after rigorous testing or begin decommissioning it ASAP.

      First posted: http://ecowatch.com/2014/09/06/california-fukushima-diablo-nuclear/

  • WhatTheFlux

    Fukushima does not equal Diablo. Comparing the two amounts to fear-mongering propaganda.

    The proper comparison is Fukushima vs. Onagawa – a nuclear power plant on the east cost of Japan 50 miles closer to the epicenter that came through the earthquake and tsunami with virtually no damage. At all.

    Here are the facts:

    All four pressurized water Fukushima reactors came through a 9.1 earthquake totally intact, and automatically shut down precisely as designed.

    What killed the Fuku reactors was TEPCO’s stupidity of siting the Emergency Backup Generators (EBGs) at sea level, which were swamped by the tsunami.

    Onagawa Nuclear Plant has four pressurized water reactors of similar design. They also came through the 9.1 quake totally intact, automatically shutting down within seconds.

    Unlike Fukushima, the Onagawa EGBs were built on high ground, so the tsunami had no effect on them. In fact, the Onagawa plants served as disaster shelters for 500 local residents after the tsunami wiped out their village.

    Onagawa is the proper comparison. Not Diablo.

    In addition:

    Fukushima is near a subduction fault, which generates large tsunamis. Diablo is near strike-slip faults, which does not.

    And, the Fuku reactors were built at sea level. Diablo is built 140 ft above sea level, and its EGBs are built 85 ft above sea level.

    Conjuring up a Fukushima scenario for Diablo is reprehensible nonsense.

    • CaptD

      WhatTheFlux – I suggest that you reconsider your claim that Fukushima was destroyed by (ONLY) the Tsunami, since many that worked there have also mentioned that the earthquake started the reactor leakage meltdown process, which is something that the entire nuclear industry cannot afford to admit, since it means that ALL REACTORS ARE SUSCEPTIBLE TO EARTHQUAKES, which they or course are!

      • WhatTheFlux

        Again – the four reactors at Onagawa are 50 miles closer to the epicenter and they all came through just fine.

        • CaptD

          Different Nuclear reactors are like Apples and Oranges, especially when they are sited at different places, so what you are saying makes little sense!

          Poor welds fail when too much stress is applied and interior stress fractures are yet another factor that could easily cause one reactors core coolant system to fail where another reactor escapes a nuclear disaster. Remember, the Titanic’s crew were all at ease as their passengers partied, while it was still afloat, that is until it hit the Iceberg, then things went from BAD to worse, just like Fukushima after the massive Earth Quake and Tsunami.

          • WhatTheFlux

            Point well taken, Capt. Which is why I strongly favor molten salt reactors (MSRS) over any form of solid-fuel, water-cooled, pressurized light water reactors (LWRs).

            A leak from a damaged liquid-fuel MSR would be measured in square meters, not square kilometers — about the size of a spill from a concrete truck. It’d be a hot mess, but nothing would travel downwind or downstream.

            If the Fuku reactors were MSRs, they’d now have, at most, a couple of contaminated reactor buildings, not a contaminated prefecture.

        • Joe Dick

          Yes, whatever you are, time to stop. Next call, FBI and Disqus. Sorry about your luck.

          Who is CaptD?

          “It” refuses to answer any questions.

          “it” even responds to websites with threads that haven’t been discussed in over a year.

          Human beings have multiple interests; CaptD has only one, which is decidedly anti-nuclear and pro-solar panel.

          Real people have multiple interests: The next iPhone, a discussion about a movie… Something… Please…

          Hey, I care about science and computing and airships, among other things. At least my Disqus account demonstrates that.

          This “it”, what ever “it” is, that can’t pass a Turing test by answering a single question…

          Pretty creepy, don’t y’all think?

          If “it” is an individual, so singly minded against nuclear powerplants, I do hope that person is on the FBI’s radar. That could be a threat to a lot of people, as single minded as this “individual” seems to be.

          If “it” is a bot or paid shill, Disqus should really be more careful, yes?

          Either way… very, very creepy.

          Yeah, my name is funny, but at least you can type in “Helium Hokum” and see a real person!

          Beware of entrance to a quarrel; it might turn out to expose nonsense you really don’t want to know exists…

          Cheers,
          Joe

      • Joe Dick

        Yes, whatever you are, time to stop. Next call, FBI and Disqus. Sorry about your luck.

        Who is CaptD?

        “It” refuses to answer any questions.

        “it” even responds to websites with threads that haven’t been discussed in over a year.

        Human beings have multiple interests; CaptD has only one, which is decidedly anti-nuclear and pro-solar panel.

        Real people have multiple interests: The next iPhone, a discussion about a movie… Something… Please…

        Hey, I care about science and computing and airships, among other things. At least my Disqus account demonstrates that.

        This “it”, what ever “it” is, that can’t pass a Turing test by answering a single question…

        Pretty creepy, don’t y’all think?

        If “it” is an individual, so singly minded against nuclear powerplants, I do hope that person is on the FBI’s radar. That could be a threat to a lot of people, as single minded as this “individual” seems to be.

        If “it” is a bot or paid shill, Disqus should really be more careful, yes?

        Either way… very, very creepy.

        Yeah, my name is funny, but at least you can type in “Helium Hokum” and see a real person!

        Beware of entrance to a quarrel; it might turn out to expose nonsense you really don’t want to know exists…

        Cheers,
        Joe

    • OHDisqusNSA666100

      You only acknowledge the problems of Fukushima because Fukushima’s already happened.
      Japan was never said by you to be irresponsible, until now it’s too late to try and call Japan responsible. If Japan is not responsible, how do we expect any other supposedly advanced nation to be responsible.
      :Look at that beach! You have not said this is not the photograph. It is disgusting what you are trying to do. You don’t care what happened at Fukushima, other than to try to twist it around into a reason why this reactor is supposedly different.

      • WhatTheFlux

        “Look at that beach!”

        What are you talking about?

  • Cynical Observer

    Since I’ve had the experience of working on a California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) case, I wanted to add a few facts concerning the supposed imposition of any fine on PG&E relating to the explosion in San Bruno.

    Essentially, CPUC’s major decision making is a five step process. Right now, the levying of any fine is only on Step 3-1/2:

    (1) As to a particular problem area, such as a utility rate increase or a gas line explosion, the particular utility division of the CPUC (e.g. water or natural gas or electricity) and/or the Ratepayer Advocate (an office in the CPUC which literally argues what is best for the rate payers and does a pretty good job at it) write report(s) on the particular issue.

    (2) A CPUC Hearing Officer, who is like a judge but does not need to be a lawyer, holds a public hearing on a matter, such as a fine against a for-profit utility company which is oddly called a “public utility”. The public utility’s representative(s), the particular utility division of the CPUC,/and interested members of the public present evidence. There is a court reporter who makes a transcript at the hearing. Sometimes on complicated cases, like the one concerning the San Bruno natural gas main line explosion, two CPUC Hearing Officers will work together on the case.

    (3) The Hearing Officer writes a written decision, which is formally served on all parties. In the case of the San Bruno natural gas main line explosion, the Hearing Officers decided that a huge fine should be levied on PG&E. Sometimes, as in the San Bruno fine case, the public utility can appeal the Hearing Officer’s decision within 30 days after the written decision is served on the parties. IN THE CASE OF THIS HUGE FINE ON PG&E ARISING OUT OF THE SAN BRUNO EXPLOSION, AP REPORTED THAT PG&E FILED THEIR APPEAL WITH THE CPUC. SO THE FINE DESCRIBED IN THE STORY ABOVE COULD SHRINK, OR ITS CHARACTER (SUCH AS THE USES OF THE FINE MONEY) COULD CHANGE AFTER THE APPEAL,

    (4) When an appeal of such a fine is timely filed, the full Public Utilities Commission, with all of its currently-sitting Commissioners appointed by past and present Governors, gets to hear the appeal. Sometimes a “lead Commissioner” is assigned to the case, and the lead Commissioner and his/her staff do more research and reading on the facts underlying the Hearing Officer’s decision. The CPUC’s lawyers give legal advice to the Commissioners, in private, as to what the Commissioners can and cannot decide to do, based on the Commission’s own precedent, California statutes and California Supreme Court case law. AS A RESULT, AT SOME UNKNOWN FUTURE DATE THE FULL COMMISSIONERS WILL HEAR PG&E’s APPEAL, THROUGH PG&E’s LAWYERS, AND ALL OF THE PARTIES TO THE ORIGINAL HEARING WILL ALSO GET TO PARTICIPATE IN THE APPEAL HEARING. That participation is mostly through written briefs, but sometimes on rare occasions the Commissioners will hear live argument. ULTIMATELY, THE COMMISSIONERS WILL ISSUE A WRITTEN DECISION ON THE APPEAL. THEY HAVE THE POWER TO REDUCE THE FINE SUGGESTED BY THE HEARING OFFICER AND THE POWER TO CHANGE HOW THE FINE MONEY IS TO BE SPENT. ON RARE OCCASIONS A COMMISSIONER WILL WRITE A DISSENT. If PG&E or any other party doesn’t like the Commission’s decision on the Appeal, they can ask the Commissioners for a “Rehearing”. Usually requests for rehearing are denied.

    (5) PG&E and any other party who participated in the Commissioner’s hearing, who doesn’t like the CPUC Commissioners’ written decision can appeal to the California Supreme Court, and in some rare circumstances to the California Court of Appeal and thereafter to the California Supreme Court. From then on, the case proceeds like a normal appellate case. Ultimately the final appellate court with jurisdiction writes an opinion deciding the matters on the appeal. When the appeal process is finished, if the Commissioners’ decision is overturned in whole or in part, the appellate court can either fix the error through a direct order, or send the case back to the Commissioners with directions on how to fix the error. If any one of the parties don’t like a “fix” of a prior decision by the Commissioners they can appeal again, and appeal yet again if they don’t like the Commissioners fix of the fix.

    Unless PG&E is “happy” with the amount of the fine ultimately assessed against it by the Commissioners they can pay it. If they are not, it is going to be a long, long time before the appeals are exhausted and the fine is paid.

    I have no evidence that PG&E is in economic trouble, but for academic purposes, I point out that if PG&E’s executives filed another Chapter 11 bankruptcy for its parent/holding company, which is not a regulated utility, then the CPUC would be stayed/stopped from taking any legal action to enforce the fine under 11 U.S.C. 362, which is called the “automatic stay”, and the CPUC would have to wait until the U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge assigned to the case gave CPUC the go ahead (“relief from stay”) to collect the fine. I’m not saying the fine could not be collected, but PG&E’s lawyers and unsecured creditors would have to be given the opportunity to argue to the Bankruptcy Court Judge as to why actual collection of the fine would “impair the debtor’s ability to successfully reorganize”.

    So it’s going to be a long and winding road for the CPUC to collect the fine the Hearing Officers imposed as a result of the San Bruno natural gas main line explosion, and unless PG&E wants to pay the fine, I don’t think I’ll live to see it happen.

    • CaptD

      Cynical Observer Good Comment!

      BTW: I believe that the CPUC have just allowed PG&E to increase some of their rates which will more than make up for any fine they have to pay…

      Also telling is that the amount of the billion dollar fine is only about one third of what the CPUC’s own Staff recommended!

  • Winslow Wilson

    Germany is now beginning to set record days of solar and wind producing more power than coal, oil and nuclear combined. These are set on certain days when sun and wind are good for the machinery they have put in place. Not every day is record setting. However, they have only just begun. So Scott Medwid who made his comment here on this article is totally wrong.

    More and more records will be set by Germany as they go into full production of their latest breakthroughs in the significantly increased solar cells they’ve recently created. They are still installing their giant wind props in the oceans and I can guarantee that they know full well what they are doing and the major challenge they have undertaken.

    Germany announced 3 years ago after the Fukushima fiasco that they would begin phasing out nuclear power. They didn’t say they would do it overnight and they knew it was not going to be quick and easy. But these people are committed and if you know anything about the German mind, it is very willful. They are the economic dynamo of Europe right now.

    Of course France’s power production looks good in the temporary present, cost wise to Germany, but Germany will soon pass them using totally clean energy. France is a great risk to the rest of the world with its Nuclear Poison Power Potential.

    Germany is putting new, state of the art, clean energy machines into place and of course they will have to increase a bit on their coal to keep their country running properly to insure the success and completion of their new clean energy program.

    It will be a stellar program and the envy of the world. Meanwhile all of the Nuke advocates still haven’t come up with a way to end the ongoing Fukushima fiasco that requires dumping of millions of gallons of radioactive water into the Pacific week after week. It’s been going on for 3 years.

    The Nuclear Power Industry motto is “Profit at any Cost.” Your health and the health of your city is a risk they are willing to take. San Onofre was shut down with criminal charges being brought against the Industry. They were knowingly putting not only San Diego but Los Angeles at imminent risk with major coverups of their mistakes and sloppy equipment.

    Imagine the infrastructure that would be radioactively contaminated right now in both of those cities if their slop had continued. Trillions upon trillions and more trillions of dollars sitting in a giant ghost region of what was once two thriving metropolis’s.

    For interest sake, I’ll ask the reader to Google Nuclear Accidents and Near Nuclear Accidents. Look and see what these people are capable of. Read the reasons of how these things occurred.

    It usually involved cover up and lying on safety reports in order to keep the plant going and making a profit. How many of them are out there right now doing just that?

    If you do google Nuclear accidents, you’re in for a real spooky reading.

    Germany has the right idea and is acting like a truly modern nation. Their economy will kick into overdrive once they begin cranking vast amounts of low cost clean energy. The world will stand in awe and wonder why their country didn’t foresee what the Germans did.

    We here in the US are like the guy who sees a steam-roller coming down the street at 2 miles per hour and we stand looking at it transfixed as it slowly makes it’s way toward us. We think we have plenty of time to get out of the way and foolishly turn our backs on it, distracted by something else. A short time later, we get flattened and wonder why.

    The oil companies and the nuclear sales teams want you to think it can’t be done. Germany wasn’t listening. Stand back and watch them go.

    • CaptD

      One thing you left out is that now France does not have enough money to decommission all their reactors plus they have already added a special tax to try and help generate more money! By running aged reactors they are asking for one or more Fukushima’s and remember all of Europe is downwind from France!

  • Dr. A. Cannara

    Paul, only the uninformed “agree”. And even wise Germans don’t agree…

    Germans on German foolishness in German (thx Sergius)…
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-e2U2cYcPro&feature=share
    http://www.finadvice.ch/files/germany_lessonslearned_final_071014.pdf
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/10577513/Germany-is-a-cautionary-tale-of-how-energy-polices-can-harm-the-economy.html
    http://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/en/downloads-englisch/pdf-files-englisch/news/electricity-production-from-solar-and-wind-in-germany-in-2013.pdf
    http://theenergycollective.com/robertwilson190/456961/reality-check-germany-does-not-get-half-its-energy-solar

    If someone really is an environmentalist, they’ll think about not just comparative safety records of sources*, but a key environmental-impact factor — power density.

    Nuclear’s power density is in GW-Hrs per kg of fuel and 10s of MW/acre. Nothing comes close to that, except, by artifice, local solar PV/hot-water, which wastes no land (but involves considerable raw materials and dangerous wastes).

    So, an environmentalist, not wanting to kill birds & bats with windmills or CSP power towers, could realize that there’s more sunlit human structure ion the world than needed to meet all peak daytime power needs. Thus, local solar, EVs, efficient storage and nuclear are all we need for thousands of years.

    We actually need about 1TW of advanced nuclear just to address the looming ocean acidification & extinctions problem, but everyone has shared it its cause**.

    The other, increasingly inconvenient truth anti-nukes face is that environmental scientists, Nobel winners, even the Dalai Lama & a beloved President, are explaining the necessity for nuclear power… http://tinyurl.com/kn22qcn
    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/01/24/more-views-on-nuclear-power-waste-safety-and-cost/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=1
    http://tinyurl.com/6xgpkfa
    http://blogs.wsj.com/japanrealtime/2011/11/07/dalai-lama-a-role-for-nuclear-power-in-development-process/

    Sort of like climate deniers, anti-nukes are finding it ever harder to exploit others’ ignorance & fears via their own.
    ;]

    * http://www.thoriumremix.com (2nd video graphic)
    ** http://tinyurl.com/nqfem24

  • Dr. A. Cannara

    By the way, the fact that the editors of this site allowed this misstatement to get published speaks for this site’s lack of integrity…

    “The massive San Andreas fault is just 45 miles away [from Diablo Canyon], about half as
    far as was the March 11, 2011, Richter-9.0 epicenter from Fukushima.”

    Do the editoprs here think all their readers are stupid? Or, if so, can they not control their speciousness?

    Our future depends on accurate understanding of reality — science & engineering. This site seems more interested in scaring people into reading propaganda & donating. I’ll be using this site as an example with students of propaganda and yellow journalism, until the editors actually mature into ethical journalists.

    a) The Tohoku earthquake zone off eastern Japan is a massive subduction zone, where the western edge of the Pacific tectonic plate dives under the plate upon which Japan rides. This is the most dangerous type of quake & tsunami source. And, stresses on this subduction fault have increased now down nearer Tokyo. A truly horrific quake/tsunami event is forthcoming.

    b) The faults in & offshore of California are all slip faults, incapable of anything close to the tsunami & shaking events from subduction zones. Despite this reality, Diablo Canyon was designed to withstand a massive 7.5 quake.

    The write and editors here clearly disguise essential facts, such as the distinctions among earthquake fault types, their movements and their potential effects in the sea.

    They and this site also shamefully exploit falsehoods for whatever their purpose is, such as: “…far more radiation is spewing into the Pacific than previously admitted. The thyroid cancer death rate among children in the area is 40 times normal.”

    1) The inconvenient truth is that the Pacific is 200 billion billion gallons of water and receives far more radioactive materials from natural river flows into it than TEPCO, or all Japan’s reactors, could ever release: http://deepseanews.com/2014/01/all-the-best-scientifically-verified-information-on-fukushima-impacts/

    2) The author doesn’t seem to like medical facts…
    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(14)60909-0/fulltext?rss%3Dyes
    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/07/31/national/science-health/experts-question-fukushima-thyroid-screening/#.U92Z_RYXJJm

    Apparently, this site is shameless in promoting fear and ignorance, just when our descendants are looking back at us from the future and rightfully expecting learned competence.

    Dr. A. Cannara
    650 400 3071 (call if confused)

  • CaptD

    Who questions our Nuclear Experts beliefs when it come to risk taking?

    At some point, perhaps gross denial is best left for mental professionals with other types of training.

    Case in Point, Japan is now suffering with a Trillion Dollar Nuclear Eco-Disaster, yet most nuclear experts and elected Officials consider that it, in effect, is “no big deal”:

    . Polluted Ocean, N☢ Problem, it will get better after a while

    . Polluted Fields, N☢ Problem, they can remove the upper layer

    . Polluted Air, N☢ Problem, they can wear paper masks for a while

    . Polluted Food, N☢ Problem, they can mix the good to dilute the bad

    . Polluted Homes, N☢ Problem, they can power wash them clean

    . Polluted Schools. N☢ Problem, they can clean them

    . Polluted Cities, N☢ Problem, they can return soon…

    The Fukushima disaster is an example of a case where something like a meltdown with a once per 100,000 years probably not only occurred, but occurred 3 times in less than a week!

    Since many elected Leaders & Nuclear Professionals were “surprised” by Fukushima, perhaps EcoWatch would consider a followup Blog article, asking this question:

    Are our Nuclear Power Plants really safe from whatever Nature can throw at them, because if they are not, then global Nuclear Regulators need to begin both internal and external studies ASAP to reevaluate Nuclear Safety before something occurs that we thought never would happen, AGAIN…

    Posted in part at: http://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/Panel-wants-TEPCO-execs-charged-over-nuke-crisis-5658634.php

  • DaveMurphy4561

    A. Fusion

    1. The Fusion Torch can Create New Raw Materials

    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht. How soon the world might run out of
    necessary resources and raw materials, from drinkable water to
    strategic minerals, should be no concern for panic, rationing, or calls
    for population control. We have the ability now to create the resources
    we need, using advanced technology.

    2. Colonizing Space with Fusion Propulsion

    By Dr. Friedwardt Winterberg – Chemical rockets can take man
    to the Moon but not beyond. With fusion-propulsion rockets, man will be
    able to colonize distant planets and, one day, the entire galaxy.

    3. Fusion Energy: Yes We Can

    By Larry Hecht – LaRouche has been promoting efforts to
    develop thermonuclear fusion power since the 1970s. His energy policy
    calls for immediate deployment of nuclear power, including a rapid
    gear-up of the new fourth generation high-temperature reactors, expanded
    research and development of thermonuclear fusion energy, and broadened
    support for investigation into the anomalous nuclear effects implied by
    the phenomenon of cold fusion.

    B. Fission Power

    1. Inside the Fourth Generation Reactors

    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht – A new, fourth generation of
    nuclear reactors is ready to replace the standard reactors that have
    been producing power for 40 years. These new high-temperature reactors
    are almost 50 percent more efficient than conventional nuclear reactors,
    and supersafe.

    2. The Myth of Nuclear Waste

    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht – There’s no such thing as nuclear
    waste! This nasty term was invented just to stop the development of
    civilian nuclear power..

    3. The Beauty of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle

    By Marjorie Mazel Hecht – The best way to overcome
    irrational fear is through knowledge. To this end, reviewed here is the
    process by which natural uranium ore is turned into fuel for a nuclear
    reactor, how it is used, and how it can be recycled, such that the
    reader will come to understand that there is really no such thing as
    nuclear “waste.”.

    4. Stimulate the Economy: Build Nuclear Plants

    Marsha Freeman – LaRouche has called for the creation of a
    Federal corporation to assume, employ, and expand the idled portion of
    the machine tool and auto manufacturing industry, not to produce more
    cars, but advanced nuclear power plant and desalination plants.

    5. Nuplex City Building to Transform the Third World

    Marsha Freeman – Detailed plans to build nuclear-powered
    agro-industrial complexes date back to the Eisenhower Administration,
    but were never implemented. It’s high time to revive them.

    Appendix: Hydrogen from Nuclear Power

    Masao Hori – Hydrogen, as well as electricity, can be
    produced from any of the primary energy sources (fossil fuels, nuclear
    energy, and renewable energies). But nuclear hydrogen, because of its
    characteristics, will be expected to supply the base load.

    Appendix: US Atomic Energy Commission: Plowshare

    – Produced by the US Atomic Energy Commission, this series of videos
    explores the peaceful uses of Atomic (Nuclear) Power. Watch Part I and Part II on Archive.org

    • CaptD

      DaveMurphy4561 – I guess you never got the memo about nuclear is no longer fiscally competitive with wind and/or solar… The only people that would really benefit for yet more nuclear R&D are all the Pro Nuclear types that still fail to understand that nuclear can go BAD and when it does it is hugely expensive and is not very Eco-Friendly!

      As far a nuclear being used in Space, I have 2 comments you might enjoy:

      1) I have suggested to the Chairman of the NRC that a Earth Space Elevator would be the most cost effective way to lift radioactive waste off the surface so that it could be shoved into an orbit that would take it into the Sun, for “recycling”.

      2) These books make great reading about moving mankind into Space:

      The High Frontier by Gerard K. O’Neill,

      Colonies In Space by A. Heppenheim­er.

      The Third Industrial Revolution by G. Harry Stine

      The Space Enterprise by Philip Robert Harris

      Mining the Sky by John S. Lewis

  • DaveMurphy4561

    JFK’S SECRET NAWAPA XXI PLAN HAVE THE GONADS TO BUILD IT NOW SCREW THE GREENIES!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnZ_SQDrJ6U

  • OHDisqusNSA666100

    I condemn those up here, LaRouche supporters with their fission and their safe reactors, and these others up here, trying to say don’t worry.
    Look at that picture. The Japanese were said to be very technological. People said hey Japan is building reactors so we gotta we gotta! Now nobody is bragging about how much expertise Japan has with supposedly safe reactors.
    People said wait. That reactors on the beach. What about tsunamis. Don’t worry. Doesn’t matter. Why, these are the Japanese, they must have studied all the angles.
    These people are up here defending their boondoggles because the taxpayer money going into these ripoffs, goes into their boss’s pockets, and they get a little bit of it.

  • Scott Medwid

    For your consideration. William Tucker on the lost potential of nuclear power. http://online.wsj.com/articles/william-tucker-memo-to-anti-coal-warriors-make-nuclear-peace-1404170991

  • CaptD

    Since this comment is important and would not be seen by most readers, since it was buried below, here it is again:

    Here is an excellent article, published in a nuclear trade journal where both SCE & MHI engineers brag about all the changes they got away with on their new replacement steam generators at San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant, sadly it was published just weeks before San Onofre Unit 3 RSG started to fail and leak radiation.

    Improving like-for-like RSGs (The title says it all, ==> Nuclear Karma).

    https://s3.amazonaws.com/s3.documentcloud.org/documents/347889/col-nrc-tech-paper.pdf

  • Divine Hammer

    Here are four petitions, calling for the closure of the insanely placed and aging Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant. If you haven’t signed them yet, please take a moment to do so. Together, we can do it! Please pass it on ->

    (1) https://www.change.org/p/nuclear-regulatory-commission-decommission-the-aging-diablo-canyon-nuclear-power-plant

    (2) http://action.foe.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16333

    (3) http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/nrc-shut-down-diablo?source=s.icn.tw&r_by=7595393

    (4) http://act.credoaction.com/sign/diablo_canyon

  • CaptD

    More on why nuclear is near the end of its economic lifespan despite what Pro-Nuclear cheerleaders say:

    Kurzweil: Solar Energy Will Be Unlimited And Free In 20 Years
    http://www.businessinsider.com/kurzweil-says-free-solar-energy-20-years-2014-9 via @BI_Science

  • Joe Dick

    Who is CaptD?

    “It” refuses to answer any questions.

    “it” even responds to websites with threads that haven’t been discussed in over a year.

    Human beings have multiple interests; CaptD has only one, which is decidedly anti-nuclear and pro-solar panel.

    Real people have multiple interests: The next iPhone, a discussion about a movie… Something… Please…

    Hey, I care about science and computing and airships, among other things. At least my Disqus account demonstrates that.

    This “it”, what ever “it” is, that can’t pass a Turing test by answering a single question…

    Pretty creepy, don’t y’all think?

    If “it” is an individual, so singly minded against nuclear powerplants, I do hope that person is on the FBI’s radar. That could be a threat to a lot of people, as single minded as this “individual” seems to be.

    If “it” is a bot or paid shill, Disqus should really be more careful, yes?

    Either way… very, very creepy.

    Yeah, my name is funny, but at least you can type in “Helium Hokum” and see a real person!

    Beware of entrance to a quarrel; it might turn out to expose nonsense you really don’t want to know exists…

    Cheers,
    Joe

  • CaptD

    Here are two important charts that will help those learn why SCE’s in-house design team for San Onofre’s RSG Project created a multi-billion dollar design debacle, that will be used as an example of what NOT TO DO by every engineering student from now on, much like the Takoma Narrows Bridge Collapse is.

  • Charlotte Reese

    I have been using clean renewable energy for over a year,right here in SLO county. It is easy just call http://www.pear-energy.om phone number 877969-7327.

  • Swathi Krishna

    U.S. regulators haven’t implemented any of the emergency measures which their staff urgently recommended in the wake of the Fukushima disaster, and have actually weakened safety standards for U.S. nuclear reactors after the Fukushima disaster.
    http://healthcare-schools.org/dental-assistant/california/

  • candy

    Beautiful site!It is very hard to argue for solar power at this point because the technology has not progressed to the point where it is economical enough to power solar panel factories with their own product.

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  • Hani

    The nuclear industry would immediately deny all health impacts. It would blame “unpredictable” God and nature.. Prevailing winds could blanket virtually all of North America with its deadly fallout.

    click here for more details