Letter Writing Campaign to Oppose Nuke Dump
Citizens Oversight (2017-04-28) Ray Lutz
This Page: https://copswiki.org/Common/M1759
More Info: Stop Nuke Dump
Here is a letter we sent around. Your email need not be so extensive.
To: [City, county or other jurisdiction officials]
I understand that the Coastal Commission approved a permit to allow Southern California Edison to install a nuclear waste storage facility to store 3.6 million pounds of high-level nuclear waste only 100 feet from the ocean and only inches over the high-water mark. This an outrage.
Right after this permit was granted in 2015, Citizens' Oversight (citizensoversight.org) filed a lawsuit to challenge the appropriateness of this "beach" nuke dump, and now they are in settlement talks. As a public official, your input in this process is essential. Please pass a resolution opposing to this permit and in support of finding an alternative site. This must not be constructed!
WHY THIS IS A BAD IDEA:
This is high-level nuclear waste and is extremely deadly, and will remain so for up to 250,000 years (forever)!
This location, is near 8.4 million residents within 50 miles, a ten-lane freeway, and active railroad line, and thus represents a prime terrorist target. Build it in the unoccupied desert and terrorists will lose interest.
OTHER OPTIONS NOT INVESTIGATED:
There are many options that have not been explored. Edison, the plant operator, has explored only the default solution, which results in nuclear waste being stored right on the coast in an area where no one would choose to put it. They consider any sort of paperwork impossible to surmount, such as licenses that must be obtained for any other more logical location. Plus, it seems any public review of this disaster is to be avoided, typical of a publicly traded company interested in avoiding public review of what they are doing.
Q: Are there other places for the waste that would be better than San Onofre?
A: Absolutely! Here are some possibilities:
- The Palo Verde Nuclear Plant, near Phoenix, which is already licensed as a nuclear waste storage facility, is probably the most attractive alternative. It needs to be expanded, and licensing paperwork done. Transportation is feasible. (Our lawsuit focuses on this option.)
- Mojave Desert, far from civilization. We investigated this option and suggested the railroad stop called “Fishel CA”. see: http://copswiki.org/Common/M1732 for a review of this option. Our conclusion was that this specific location is perhaps too remote as services (roads, power, internet, etc.) are required, so more review is needed, but the general idea is very viable, and being right off a railroad makes transportation easy.
- Camp Pendleton, not optimal but still better: A location about 3 miles inland avoids ocean dangers, is on a secure military base, and transportation risks are minimized, but is still in an earthquake zone and near high population centers.
TIME SCALES OFF - MAY NEVER MOVE:
The permit by the Coastal Commission is for 20 years. But the Commission knows the ISFSI will be in place for at least 35 years, even given the best-case scenario. There is a Generic Environmental Impact Statement for such an ISFSI that allows it to remain in place indefinitely -- for 100 years or more. Given our history of taking care of nuclear waste, it may never move once this facility is built.
TOO CLOSE TO THE WATER:
The ground level is so close to the water level, they plan to build the structure half out of the ground but even then, the ground water level is within inches. Any increase in ocean levels in the next 100 years will likely raise the ground water to exceed the bottom of the structure. Coastal Commission admits that the coast is likely to erode up to the ISFSI location within that time as well, and they prohibited any improvement in the seawall to protect the ocean.
CANISTERS TOO BIG, HOT, THIN:
The canisters currently being used are too heavy, when coupled with the transportation over-pack, to be placed on conventional train cars or semi-trucks. They are too hot and large to be compatible with any future geologic repository, and too thin to resist ocean-air corrosion for very long. The NRC license for these canisters is only for 20 years. Although canister design is NOT within scope of this trial, we believe the Coastal Commission must take the overall risk into account.
Even though we know the relatively thin 5/8” steel canisters will likely corrode in the ocean salt air, there is no requirement for inspections in the permit period and inspection technology does not yet exist.
NEWLY DISCOVERED FAULTS:
Scripps Institution of Oceanography just completed an extended study of the faults nearby and determined the Newport-Inglewood/Rose Canyon fault is capable of a (very strong) 7.4 magnitude earthquake. Earthquakes frequently result in ground liquefaction. Additionally, some geologists predict the coast will sink about three feet in a future quake.
This location will forever be a terrorist target, with easy access from the ocean and proximity to millions of residents.
PROCESS TOO QUICK:
Why, when the waste will be deadly for at least 250,000 years and the facility may be there for decades or centuries, should we have only one short public meeting, where speakers were limited to only two minutes, and where there was no real opportunity to provide information or testimony in opposition? That Coastal Commission meeting was designed to fly under the radar. It was never announced or reviewed at the Community Engagement Panel meetings, which are supposed to provide information to the public. Wrong!
To top it off, most of the commissioners had improper secret ex parte meetings with the applicant, Southern California Edison. Wrong again!
WE MUST STOP THIS INSANITY!
If we are successful, the permit will be blocked and we can process this important decision correctly. There ARE other options, if we allow additional paperwork to be done, rather than optimizing for near-term corporate profits.
See all related information at this project link: http://citizensoversight.org/StopNukeDump
Officials Near San Onofre
Here is a spreadsheet. PLEASE HELP US UPDATE IT!