Environmentalists win 50 year battle to close San Onofre nuclear plant
opponents of the plant acknowledged that questions remain regarding what will happen to radioactive waste generated by the site and to the region’s energy needs.
Environmentalists Celebrate Nuclear Plant Closing, abc news, By GILLIAN FLACCUS and AMY TAXIN Associated Press axin reported from Tustin. AP Writer Elliot Spagat contributed to this report from SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. June 8, 2013 (AP)
Using a cane and wearing a hat reading “Peace No Nukes,” 85-year-old Lyn Harris Hicks shuffled to the front gates of the San Onofre nuclear power plant on Friday to celebrate a utility company’s decision to close the seaside facility for good.
“The announcement that we’re not going to restart and that we’re going
to close it has cut the shackles on us and we’re just floating,” she
said, chuckling as she leaned for support against a friend at the
impromptu celebration by two dozen community residents.
Environmentalists and nearby residents hailed the decision by Southern
California Edison to cease efforts to restart the plant, which hasn’t
produced electricity since a small radiation leak led to the discovery
of unusual damage to tubes that carry radioactive water.
Still, opponents of the plant acknowledged that questions remain
regarding what will happen to radioactive waste generated by the site
and to the region’s energy needs…….
Gary Headrick, who aggressively fought efforts to restart the plant
and heads the group San Clemente Green, compared his happiness to the
day his children were born.
“The joy and the relief is comparable to something that big in my
life, to know that 8 million people will be safe now from this
supposed restart,” he said as he celebrated outside the plant. As he
spoke, passing cars honked in approval and a group of bicyclists
whizzing by in the morning fog shouted, “Shut it down!”…… Sandra
Bartsch, who lives less than 30 miles from the plant in San Diego
County, said she hugged and kissed her 5-year-old son when she heard
about the closure. The 44-year-old, who became opposed to the plant
after last year’s leak, acknowledged that questions remain about the
future of the site but said for now she’s relishing the victory.
“There’s still a lot of work to be done,” Bartsch said. “But today we
are just happy.”
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