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Did PG&E secretly alter Earthquake Standards for Diablo Canyon nuclear plant?

Diablo nuclear power plantsecret-agent-SmPG&E May Have Secretly Altered Earthquake Standards for California’s Last Nuclear Power Plant, AlterNet The aging plant is located on an intricate network of earthquake fault lines. October 29, 2014  |  

Montaña de Oro State Park is a place where the rolling hills of the Central California coast drop from steep cliffs into crashing waves that are home to diverse sea life ranging from starfish and anemones to sea lions and migrating whales. Nestled among the wildflowers along the craggy bluffs of this majestic natural reserve is Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s nuclear power plant, Diablo Canyon………

This week a group of environmental activists brought a lawsuit against PG&E and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission because, as it turns out, federal regulators secretly revised Diablo’s license “to mask the aging plant’s vulnerability to earthquakes,” as the  San Francisco Chronicle put it.

“The suit claims that the  Nuclear Regulatory Commission and [PG&E] last year changed a key element of the plant’s license related to seismic safety without allowing public input as required by law — or even notifying the public at all. The changes concern the strength of earthquakes that the plant … can withstand,” reports the  Chronicle.

The public PG&E failed to notify consists of my parents, cousins, teachers, childhood friends, and their children. It’s heartbreaking to read about a nuclear disaster an ocean away, but it’s terrifying to realize that the same thing could happen here in California because of a greedy, negligent corporate coverup.

The lawsuit was filed in  U.S. District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, which is specifically set up to review the decisions of federal agencies. The group behind the suit wants the court to shut down the plant until the necessary changes are in place. They want public hearings to take place to amend Diablo Canyon’s license. So far PG&E denies all of the allegations………

“Environmentalists have long argued that the plant wasn’t designed to survive the shaking that some of the newly discovered faults could produce,” states the  Chronicle. “And last year, Michael Peck, one of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s inspectors at Diablo, recommended shutting down the plant until the commission determined that its equipment could withstand a strong quake from those faults. The commission rejected the idea.”……http://www.alternet.org/environment/pge-may-have-secretly-altered-earthquake-standards-californias-last-nuclear-power-plant

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November 19, 2014 - Posted by | Legal

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