Op-ed author Jim Hopf writes "A primary reason why Diablo Canyon is being closed is that it is not included in California’s mandate for renewable power generation, despite its lack of pollution and CO2 emissions."
That may be a primary reason, but here's the primary reason: PG&E had been required by the California Water Resources Board to replace its once-through cooling (OTC) system with cooling towers, at a cost of $9.9 billion - nearly twice the original cost of the entire plant. After 35 years, California suddenly decided Diablo Canyon's OTC system was a "chronic stressor to the state's aquatic ecosystems" - based on research showing that from the 2 billion gallons of water the plant recycles each day, an average of 2 fish were killed.
This blatant move to force shutdown of the plant had nothing to do with saving 2 fish/day, of course. It had everything to do with California natural gas interests Sempra, Shell, and Chevron seizing an opportunity, post-Fukushima, to replace 18 trillion watthours of clean electricity with the gas-fired kind - the kind causing climate change. By creating a monolithic obstacle for PG&E to overcome, they thought they had it in the bag, but they were wrong.
No discussions yet. Start a discussion below.
Get Published - Build a Following
The Energy Central Power Industry Network is based on one core idea - power industry professionals helping each other and advancing the industry by sharing and learning from each other.
If you have an experience or insight to share or have learned something from a conference or seminar, your peers and colleagues on Energy Central want to hear about it. It's also easy to share a link to an article you've liked or an industry resource that you think would be helpful.