Don Mosier | Rimini Road
On August 7th, the 73rd and final fuel rod assembly was interred in its concrete silo at SONGS, which should be renamed since it has not been a Nuclear Generating Station since 2012. San Onofre Nuclear Waste Burial Site would be more appropriate. The removal of all of the spent fuel rods from the cooling pool does reduce some risk elements, but the planned dismantling of the cooling pool does eliminate one option for dealing with damaged or leaking storage canisters. The SONGS Task Force report commissioned by Rep. Mike Levin (D-49th) goes into much more detail about why this may be a bad plan. Here is a link to the report: http://bit.ly/songs-report .
We earlier reported on the departure of the 770-ton Unit 1 reactor core on its trip from SONGS to Clive, Utah. The trip to North Los Vegas, Nevada was on a Schnabel train car (see June Sandpiper), but from there to Clive required transport via a giant truck with 45 axles and a length of 122 feet. It took 7 weeks for the total trip (this was one slow truck) but the reactor core arrived safely on July 21st. The Unit 2 and Unit 3 cores will be dismantled before shipping, but the shipment must wait years for the level of radioactivity to decay. Cleaning up a nuclear reactor site is neither fast nor easy.