San Onofre: a Trillion Dollar Threat to SoCal
The Perils of Tritium
ARTICLE SOURCE: CounterPunch.org
July 13, 2011
By RUSSELL D. HOFFMAN - of Carlsbad
San Onofre Nuclear Waste Generating Station (SONWGS) is a pair of aging Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs) in the midst of Southern California's burgeoning, vibrant, forward-thinking, technologically advanced, interconnected, health-conscious population.
It doesn't belong here at all, and it's well past time to get rid of it. Conceived in the 1950s, the two units that still operate were designed in the 60s, built in the 70s, went online in the 80s, and have been falling apart ever since. And they have been piling up nuclear waste along our coast ever since, too -- at the horrific rate of 500 pounds per day, with nowhere to put it. There are over eight million pounds of so-called "spent fuel" at the site right now -- making it potentially worse than Fukushima in an accident.
Back in the USA, San Onofre has had numerous fires, explosions, electrical shorts, radioactive coolant leaks, and even a few near-misses over the years. It was only built (rebuilt, actually) to withstand earthquakes less than one tenth the magnitude scientists predict can (and probably WILL) occur in the area.
SanO's tsunami sea wall is barely 14 feet above mean high tide! Evacuation plans are obsolete and were never workable anyway. KI tablet (potassium iodide) distribution systems in the event of an accident are a joke -- a deadly one.
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