State asked to remove costs relating to shutdown of San Onofre nuclear station from consumers’ electric bills

SAN DIEGO – A consumer advocate division of the California Public Utilities Commission filed a motion today, June 25 encouraging the state to remove costs related to the shuttered San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station from consumers’ electricity bills.

The Division of Ratepayer Advocates, the independent consumer advocate of the commission, wants the state to direct Rosemead-based Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric Co. to stop charging consumers for San Onofre-related costs, except for essential safety and security expenses, according to Christopher Chow, a spokesman for the commission.

It wasn’t immediately clear how much less on average a consumer’s bill would be if the commission approves the motion.

The DRA’s motion was prompted by Edison’s June 7 announcement that it was shuttering the San Diego County seaside plant for good. Edison officials had been battling to get at least part of the plant back online, but decided to drop it partly because the administrative process to gain regulatory approval could have taken more than another year, which was deemed too costly.

The utility estimated in February that the closure of the plant located south of San Clemente had cost it $400 million.

Two of the plant’s reactor units have been offline since early last year. Another unit, which was in operation from 1968 to 1992, was shut down over concerns it could not withstand a major earthquake.

Unit 2 was shut down Jan. 9, 2012, for planned routine maintenance, while Unit 3 was shut down on Jan. 31, 2012, due to a small leak of radioactive steam, which did not lead to any injuries.

Edison determined the leak was caused by wear and tear on steam pressure tubes in the reactors that happened faster than expected.

Edison had been pushing the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to restart one unit at 70 percent capacity for five months as a test run.

18 Responses to "State asked to remove costs relating to shutdown of San Onofre nuclear station from consumers’ electric bills"

  1. Avocado Gold   June 25, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    Just got a notice from SDG&E. They said it would be $25.00 for a 100.00 bill. $75.00 for $250.00 bill on average. 25% plus increase. Wow!!! That’s quite a rate hike.

  2. Zak Red Ridge   June 25, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    "Privatise the profits" and "Socialise the losses" What a con! Say no! , to any rate hikes, shareholders should pay!

  3. GO FIGURE   June 26, 2013 at 5:13 am


  4. Bob in Philly   June 26, 2013 at 5:27 am

    Once again the nuclear industry creating problems it cannot solve then dumping all the losses on local rate payers and U.S. taxpayers at large.

  5. Check it out   June 26, 2013 at 8:07 am

    Wrong Bob. SCE spent millions fixing a problem that was NEVER any danger to the public. The problem was caused by Mitsubishi. Senator Boxer told Edison officials that no matter how much money they spent she would never allow them to reopen. They had no choice but to shut down and lay off over a thousand employees. Of course our rates are going to skyrocket, what did the no nukes crowd think would happen? Now they are the ones crying the loudest. Boxer could care less. It was never about safety, it was always about politics. California is the dumbest state in the nation. Once again we are going to be screwed by our elected officials and the energy companies. Welcome to the real world.

  6. The day is coming   June 26, 2013 at 8:49 am

    Check it out (#5), you are dead on. Imagine rate payers surprise with the bill from the final solutions act, AB32, tacks another 25% on top of this raise. Environmentalists just killed the 6 square mile solar project near Barstow too. It should be obvious to anybody paying attention that their goal is make California into a third world nation by driving companies out of business and then nationalizing each industry one at a time. Don’t fool yourself. This is NOT about the environment. This is right out of the Hugo Chaves play book and if you are supporting their causes, you are a fool.

  7. Hmm   June 26, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Most were talking previously about how sad the job loss is, yet now the pop-topic is not wanting extra charges on bill? The real tragedy is that the employed were, likely, satisfied with being relegated to menial paper pushing and various tasks that they knew predominately served no interest outside of a paycheck. They now enter the market, with a name on their resume that most will recognize, and skills that the fat trimmed market does not appreciate nor owe anything to.

  8. Reality Checker   June 26, 2013 at 11:16 am

    I’ve gotta weigh in on the solar project thing, and you may not realize it or even believe this, but you can however, investigate it for yourself. The environmental groups opposition to any solar project near Barstow or any other place is actually going to save you money. They (enviros) may not even realize this, or even care. Solar projects are worthless boondoggles. They are expensive to build, maintain, and operate, and they cannot provide power to the national grid. The voltage can’t be stepped up enough to effectively transmit it over long distances. It likely wouldn’t provide any useable power more than 30 miles away. Since it has to be out in the stinking desert, there is no practical way to use it in the more populated areas of the state where it is needed the most. It’s possible to transmit natural gas powered or coal powered or even nuclear powered energy to outlying cites like Barstow, but solar or wind power generation can’t compensate for the losses incurred stepping up the voltage to a level necessary to transmit it over long distances.
    In other words, unless you live right next to the dang thing, it’s a complete and utter waste of time and money. There’s no way, even if it were an affordable option, to build a solar generation plant in the middle of every California city. It’s useless as an alternative to more conventional sources.

  9. FR86   June 26, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Well once again in her zeal to make herself important Senator Boxer is making her constituents pay more for power and allow the power company responsible for this problem to escape the cost of paying for their actions.

    Why didn’t she also push for a cost effective fix of the problem to maintain the power cost for us rather than just call for another senate investigation witch hunt………….

    She is a drain on the people of this state.

  10. local   June 26, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    I hate how the nuclear industry is run. Yes, nuclear plants produce a lot of power for the land area they use, but that’s the only positive. They’re not built well enough to survive disasters. The cost of containing the hazardous waste for THOUSANDS of years is never factored into their operating expenses. The NRC has always proved to be spineless and tainted by insider influence.

    The responsibility for properly maintaining a large nuclear reactor that can directly threaten the lives of millions of people when mismanaged should never be entrusted to a for-profit corporation.

    Cheap, safe, plentiful power is a national security issue and instead of spending trillions overseas we could set up a proper tax funded system that’s by the people and for the people. As a nation why should we depend on greedy corporations to survive?

  11. Carla   June 26, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Good for Senator Boxer! There is no excuse in allowing a nuclear powered generating facility to continue to operate right next to our precious Pacific Ocean and in close proximity to known fault lines. The corporate owners should bear complete and total financial responsibility for their callous disregard in pursuit of profit.

    Large utilities should be nationalized and placed under strict public supervision and control!

  12. local2   June 26, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    So how does this jibe with the notice from SDG&E today which passes the costs on to the ratepayer? Mitsubishi should pay, not us.

  13. Lee   June 26, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Carla, you are correct.

    Welcome to deregulation, folks.

    There are some things that one simply CANNOT privatize: health care, water (there’s a good one around these parts), utilities in general, and on and on it goes. Or let me rephrase that: you can, but these are the results now staring us in our face. Oh well.

    Think of deregulation every time you open your utility bill. Enjoy.

  14. Seriously??   June 27, 2013 at 8:17 am

    Oh sure, let’s blame everyone except the people who are to blame. The politicians and the wackos. Edison had the ability to fix the problem but they were told no matter what they did or how much they spent it would never reopen. Now we have 2000 people out of work, which means more people on unemployment, more houses that will go into foreclosure, more retail businesses that will lose money because these people won’t be supporting them anymore and the list goes on. SDG&E will laugh all the way to the bank.

  15. FR86   June 27, 2013 at 8:46 am

    Carla et. al.

    The government has never accomplished anything other than to complicate your lives and waste your tax money on maintaining and growing itself. We have enough laws and regulations which accomplish very little if not enforced. Congress could go on hiatus for 10 years and we wouldn’t notice anything different .

    My point with Sen. Boxer was that just shutting down S.O. was very dramatic but accomplished nothing for us other than to raise our rates. I’d applaud her efforts if she’d fixed the power production requirements FIRST……….then went on her witch hunt.

    Carla, when your lights go out you’ll notice that.

  16. Ugh   June 27, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    Carla and Lee –

    How exactly is privatization the problem? The real problem is a lack of competition…the problem staring you in the face now is a monopoly sponsored/endorsed by the government. Allow me to choose another another water provider or another utility provider and prices will fall. What is staring us in the face is the fact that they can charge whatever they want and we HAVE to pay because there is no other option – weirdly enough, the same thing happens when you have government running things. Looked at the state of public schools, the post office, or social security (to name a very few) lately? Seems like a solid solution you two have there.

    The problem is not privatization, it is that we allow monopolies, period. The only way it could be worse would be if the government were running it.

  17. Lee   June 28, 2013 at 7:13 am

    Carla, you wanna to take this one?

  18. Pink   June 28, 2013 at 10:44 am

    @Lee: Carla would have to take it because clearly you wouldn’t be able to.

    I agree with Ugh, we need less government in our lives not more.


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