Feds, Edison meet Friday in Orange County on San Onofre nuclear plant restart

View of the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant in north San Diego County.
View of the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant in north San Diego County.

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The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Southern California Edison (SCE) officials are  meeting Friday in Laguna Hills to talk about the utility's plans to restart the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. 

The plant has been offline since a radioactive steam leak last January – due to problems with steam generator tubes and possible design flaws in recently replaced generators at the plant's two units.

The meeting comes days after the utility reported a backup generator for one of the plant's units might have been tampered with although the investigation is on-going.

The initial problem with the backup diesel generator, coolant in its oil system, was first reported in October

The generator kicks in during a power outage or other emergency, such as an earthquake.

This week, SCE told the NRC that an “internal investigation found evidence of potential tampering” as the cause of the problem with the generator. But Jennifer Manfre with Edison said the evidence pointing to tampering is not conclusive and the investigation continues.

Read the utility's full statement below.

Meanwhile,  Nuclear Regulatory Commission officials will meet tonight in Laguna Hills with Southern California Edison to talk about the utility's proposal for the limited restarting of one of the San Onofre nuclear plant’s two units. Edison wants to restart the Unit 2 reactor for a limited time at low power, to reduce vibrations - cited as one reason steam generator tubes were wearing out an accelerated rate – along with possible design flaws in the generators.  

The meeting, open to the public,  is scheduled to start at 6 p.m.  at the San Clemente Hills Hotel, 25205 La Paz Road, Laguna Hills.

SCE Statement on Backup Diesel Generator Issue