Safe Storage Search?

The SONGS Task Force appointed by Rep. Mike Levin (D-CA49) met on February 14 to review recent progress at the federal level on the goal of removing spent nuclear fuel (SNF) from the San Onofre site. The good news is that a Request for Information (RFI) relevant to SNF relocation was issued by the Department of Energy at the beginning of December with responses due March 4, 2022. Here is the summary text of the RFI:


“The Office of Nuclear Energy , U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), requests information on how to site Federal facilities for the temporary, consolidated storage of spent nuclear fuel using a consent-based approach. DOE anticipates that communities; governments at the local, State, and Tribal levels; members of the public; energy and environmental justice groups; organizations or corporations; and other stakeholders may be interested in responding to this Request for Information (RFI). We especially welcome insight from people, communities, and groups that have historically not been well-represented in these discussions. Responses to the RFI will inform development of a consent-based siting process, overall strategy for an integrated waste management system, and possibly a funding opportunity.”


In a separate positive action, Rep. Levin introduced legislation (H.R. 6685) to prioritize removal of spent nuclear fuel from high population areas at greatest risk (SONGS being one) rather than from the power plants that have been shuttered the longest. The bill was cosponsored by a bipartisan group of local representatives including Darrell Issa (D-CA49), Scott Peters (D-CA52), Michelle Steel (R-CA48), Katie Porter (D-CA45) and Kim Young (R- CA39). 

Photo: Betty Wheeler