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Power Technology

Decommissioning San Onofre Nuclear Plant May Take Decades 266

Posted by samzenpus
from the long-game dept.
gkndivebum writes "Southern California Edison has elected to decommission the San Onofre nuclear plant after a failed effort to upgrade the steam generation system. 'Nuclear economics' is the reason stated for the proposed decommissioning. Other utilities operating nuclear power plants in the US likely face similar decisions when it comes to weighing the costs of upgrading older facilities. Allowing the reactors to remain in 'safe storage' for a period of up to 60 years will allow for radioactive decay and lower radiation exposure for the workers performing the demolition."
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Decommissioning San Onofre Nuclear Plant May Take Decades

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  • US Epic fail (Score:5, Insightful)

    by girlintraining (1395911) on Sunday June 09, 2013 @07:23PM (#43956207)

    Other utilities operating nuclear power plants in the US likely face similar decisions when it comes to weighing the costs of upgrading older facilities.

    Yeah, my country unfortunately has a 60,000% idiot tax. We get massive amounts of food poisoning because people fear irradiated food. We pollute so badly that we've managed to kill large lakes and entire biomes in Africa because we're burning fossil fuel as our primary energy source when we were the ones that first created nuclear power. 4% of my fellow countrymen believe that shape-shifting reptiles are trying to control the government through political manipulation... another 7% "aren't sure". And we're reporting record numbers of people joining the Flat Earth Society, and have one of the lowest rates of acceptance in the theory of evolution of any industrialized country on Earth.

    In short, we're morons. That's why nuclear power is so expensive here, and why we're letting these plants rot... it's stupid, pathetic, moronic fear of technology, science, and progress. And it's killing the planet. Literally. We are literally dying of stupidity.

  • Re:This is crap (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nospam007 (722110) * on Sunday June 09, 2013 @07:32PM (#43956261)

    "For the moment, until things change, nuclear power is the only source that provides enough to keep things going without buring stuff and putting it into the air and everywhere....Anti-nuke people haven't been paying attention. "

    We were paying attention to Germany who shut down their reactors but nonetheless had enough solar and wind to export power to nuclear France when their reactors couldn't run because there wasn't enough cooling water in summer or frozen in winter. The also had their first day last year where wind/solar made enough to power the whole fucking country alone.

    When such a wind-generator is obsolete, you don't have to guard it for 60 years, dismantle it for billions and guard the remains for a couple of hundred thousand years either. If it falls down, there's a dent in the shrubbery and unlike nuclear, they even have a fucking insurance to cover the damage.

  • One word...NIMBYs. Frankly NIMBYs is why america will be fucked in the future, you can't get shit done here without the NIMBYs having a royal fucking shitfit so we either keep the pre-NIMBY shit running or do without, that really is the only choices we have.

    The sad part is if we built the new design reactors and did a second reactor beside it that reprocessed and ran on the waste of the first? we could cut the waste problem down by so much that it would be a trivial matter, but again NIMBYs will never let that shit happen.

    I would love to get some NIMBYs in a fucking room and just say "WTF are you doing? Are you living in a mud hut and doing without electricity? No, then STFU assholes" because the way the NIMBYs act you'd think power comes from the electric fairy because there is NOTHING you can build that the NIMBYs won't have a shitfit about..nuclear? "ZOMG radiation run!" fine we'll build dams then "ZOMG you'll kill teh fishies!" fine then we'll build fucking windmills, will you STFU about that? "ZOMG no, you'll kill the birdies and cause noise pollution!"...ARGH,

    FUCK OFF you whiny bastards, we HAVE TO HAVE power to power to run those latte makers and iToys you love to play with and we can't get shit built with you assholes cockblocking every damned thing we try to have! Sorry if that comes off a little harsh but if you have ever talked to one you'd know there is NO right answer, they will have an objection to building ANYTHING near them, you'd have to build everything in fricking space before they would be happy.

  • Re:US Epic fail (Score:4, Insightful)

    by girlintraining (1395911) on Sunday June 09, 2013 @07:44PM (#43956343)

    The atomic era of investing heavily in a technology that burdens human beings with the most poisonous substances on earth for literally thousands of years needs to be put to rest and this is how we do it.

    Yeah, worrying about a few hundred tons of waste we can easily bury deep in a mountain somewhere and forget about it for "literally thousands of years" is clearly inferior to cooking our planet to the point that it is no longer inhabitable.

    . The promise of truly safe nuclear power will never be delivered upon due to human greed and incompetence.

    No, it'll never be delivered upon because most of the human population will have died off in the next 150 years or so because we'll no longer have enough fertile land to support our current population due to global climate changed caused by fossil fuels. That's the entire planet, you know... billions are going to die from starvation because of fucking morons like yourself that are so worried about a few kilotons of nuclear waste you're willing to let the whole planet die. Also, coal power plants produce more nuclear radiation yearly than all the nuclear accidents in the entire history of the human race including our weapons testing and use.

    But yeah man, let's keep trumpeting the "It has to be perfect" mantra, while we choke our planet to death with less than perfect fossil fuels.

  • by crutchy (1949900) on Sunday June 09, 2013 @07:51PM (#43956391)

    as much as i agree that solar, wind, geothermal etc will never replace coal & nuclear for base load, governments have been corrupted by the nuclear industry to preserve the status quo of reliance on uranium and plutonium instead of investing in safer nuclear technologies like thorium that operate at lower pressures and have negligible half lives compared to heavier cousins so waste is less of a problem... thorium was proven in the 60's but killed pretty much immediately

  • by kurt555gs (309278) <kurt555gs@@@ovi...com> on Sunday June 09, 2013 @08:12PM (#43956529) Homepage

    Nuclear proponents are always running around yelling wind and solar pawer can't compete on a per KW basis. Well, not if you skim off the profits and leave the cleanup to taxpayers!

    Take the total lifetime cost ( including what is usually shifted onto us after the investors skeedaddle with the profits ) and divide that by KW's produced.

    Hogwash! Nuclear power is too expensive to be sustainable.

  • Re:This is crap (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 09, 2013 @09:35PM (#43957147)

    German physicist here. This is not quite true:

    When Nuclear plants were shut down (drop in 2010-2011), this was mostly compensated for by renewables (and less total production). Also the further decrease in Nuclear power in 2012 was less than the increase of renewables. Yes, also coal increased in 2012, which is mostly attributed to the low cost of emission certificates. Natural gas dropped at the same time, so this is a shift because of changes in cost for different non-renewable energy carries.

    Electricity production in Germany from 2009-2012 in TWh:
    Nucelar: 134,9 140,6 108,0 99,5
    Renewables: 94,1 103,3 123,5 136,2
    Coal: 253,5 262,9 262,5 277,0
    Natural gas: 78,8 86,8 82,5 70,0
    All (including others): 592,4 628,6 608,9 617,6

  • by Firethorn (177587) on Monday June 10, 2013 @03:54AM (#43958803) Homepage Journal

    The true cost of Nuclear power is more than any other method.

    Talk about easy mode! "Any other method" logically includes coal [forbes.com]. And [transitionvoice.com] coal [nextbigfuture.com] sucks [ibm.com]. To put it in perspective, about twice as much electricity is produced each year from coal(44.9%) as from nuclear power(20.3%) in the USA.

    What, you want healthcare costs included along with the fatalities? Okay [env-health.org], sure [vice.com] thing [cleantechnica.com]. How does $500B/year sound, for the USA ALONE?

    I'd say I hate to break it to you, but that would be dishonest. I LOVE breaking this to you: The world could suffer a Chernobyl level event EVERY year and it would STILL come out cheaper than coal.

    And while we are at it, lets add in all of the cost for nuclear power plant accidents both public and private funds and divide that by the the number of operating plants. Let's see, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Fukushima, smaller costly but less publicized accidents.

    Let's see: Chernobyl [forbes.com]: $235B, TMI: $975M, Fukushima: too early to tell. Let's go with roughly between Chernobyl and TMI: $118B. It's probably quite high, but eh. Total: $354B, or about 3/5ths the damage coal does to the USA alone each year.

    As I've said before, Chernobyl's design wouldn't have been allowed anywhere, the cost would have been far less if it had been built with a containment dome. 437 [euronuclear.org] reactors, leaving the share per nuclear plant at $810M per your stupid standard.

    Let's put it into better context: End of 2012 nuclear power had produced 69,760 billion kwh. Chernobyl, TMI, and Fukushima amount to .5 cents of cost per kwh. Yes, half a cent.

  • by sjames (1099) on Monday June 10, 2013 @04:03AM (#43958839) Homepage

    I live in Ga and here we're actually building 2 new reactors now. I look forward to them coming online. I like low cost electricity that doesn't kill fish and birds or strip the land of all life.

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