Community panel envisions Diablo Canyon after decommissioning

Nov 29, 2018

Diablo Canyon Power Plant owner Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) is looking for community input on its plan to decommission California's last nuclear power plant. A panel tasked with helping to plan the closure has released a draft report, and Dec. 10 is the deadline to provide public comment on the panel's "strategic vision." 

The Diablo Canyon Decommissioning Engagement Panel (DCDEP) says its vision document reflects the community’s wishes for what will take place at the nuclear facility before, during and after it closes in 2025.

The report covers topics like what’s going to happen with the 12,000 acres surrounding the facility? The panel thinks it should be transferred to a conservation group to be dedicated as permanent open space. And what about all the buildings? One suggestion is a public-private collaborative R&D facility focusing on marine sciences or renewable energy development.

"The vision statement that we will be presenting in draft form to the public is a reflection of what we heard over the last seven months, and it's our best attempt to get that right," DCDEP member Kara Woodruff said at the group's Nov. 14, 2018 meeting. "But I really encourage people to read it and provide comments back so we can redrafted according to their input."

This first report will be present to the California Public Utilities Commission. Going forward, the panel will be tackling some serious issues related to decommissioning. 

"We still have a lot of important issues coming up next year—spent fuel, economic impacts of decommissioning—and so our plan is to continue to create revisions or additional volumes of the vision statement as we address and receive input on the future issues," Woodruff said. "So this is just the beginning of a long process. Stay tuned and we hope the public participates."

Click here to learn more about the panel and here to watch archived meetings. 

Editor's note: We've updated this story to reflect a new public comment deadline date. The DCDEP announced Monday it was postponing the deadline by one week, to December 10, 2018.