2003-08-22 Monthly Update

Mothers for Peace collaborates with multiple nuclear watchdog groups.

P.O. Box 164

Pismo B each, CA 93448


(805) 773-3881

Monthly Update

August 22, 2003

Currently the San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace is actively involved in seven legal proceedings before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission, San Luis Obispo County, and the Regional Water Quality Board.  In addition, we are working on outreach throughout the state and the nation.  We have garnered support from the California Energy Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission, the Attorney General, Senators Boxer and Feinstein, and Congresswoman Capps.  We are working with reactor communities across the United States and nuclear watchdog groups such as Public Citizen, Nuclear Resource Information Service, Union of Concerned Scientists, and Citizen Awareness Network.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission


On August 5, 2003, the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board denied the one issue allowed further examination regarding PG&E’s application to build a high-level radioactive waste facility at the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant site.  The licensing board decided that PG&E would be financially capable of constructing, operating, maintaining, securing and decommissioning the waste facility - even while it is in bankruptcy.  The resolution of the bankruptcy issue would end legal procedures, and in 40 days a license could be granted if there were no appeals to the decision.  However….

On August 18, 2003, the San Luis Obispo Intervenors filed an appeal to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to review and reconsider the Licensing Board’s decision to deny full hearings on issues of: financial qualification, license renewal, transportation of nuclear waste, and seismic adequacy.  On August 19, 2003, the County of San Luis Obispo also filed an appeal on the Licensing Board’s bankruptcy decision.

License Renewal

On July 15, 2003, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission held a public hearing on generic environmental impacts for nuclear plant license renewals (for an additional 20 years of operation).  The Mothers for Peace attended and provided comments.  An action letter is still available for easy comment submittals on our website (www.mothersforpeace.org).

The NRC issued an extension which was requested by the San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace.  All comments are now due by September 16, 2003.


On August 19, 2003, the Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to send a resolution requesting  that the NRC stay any license renewal for Diablo Canyon until issues of security and terrorism at Diablo Canyon are resolved.  The resolution was sent to all California state and federal officials and oversight agencies.


The Mothers for Peace will be filing an appeal in federal court on the terrorism issue later this year. This appeal is estimated to cost $100,000.  We have raised approximately $20,000 to date and, depending on our ability to raise money, we are considering appealing denial of full hearings on all issues.

Freedom of information requests have been jointly filed by the Mothers for Peace and the Union of Concerned Scientists to the NRC regarding its new policy on terrorism.  We have asked for disclosure of the “stakeholders” the NRC met with to create this new policy.  This request was filed in April, and there has been no response thus far.

The Mothers for Peace also joined Public Citizen in an appeal to the DC court of appeals - again relating to the new NRC policy on terrorism at nuclear plants.  This issue remains open after several months.


California Public Utilities Commission


The California Public Utilities Commission will be holding a public hearing on August 27, 2003, at the Sand’s Motel, 1930 Monterey St, in San Luis Obispo.  Items for discussion include: PG&E’s general rate case - including the reorganization of the Diablo Canyon Independent Safety Committee, and PG&E’s bankruptcy settlement.  The Mothers for Peace filed a Petition with the Commission regarding the reorganization of the Safety Committee.  It makes the recommendations to:

  • remove PG&E  from the nomination process;
  • appoint a qualified public member of our community to the Committee;
  • relocate the Committee’s office currently located from Monterey to San Luis Obispo;
  • provide video recordings all Safety Committee meetings for additional public outreach.

Regional Water Quality Control Board

The Mothers for Peace is a party to the investigation and resolution of the damage to the marine environment caused by the operation of Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant.  The Regional Water Quality Control Board is currently looking into reinstating the Cease and Desist Order, and its independent biologists are studying methods of mitigation. 

County of San Luis Obispo

The Mothers for Peace filed comments in both public meetings held by the San Luis Obispo County Planning Department.  We meet regularly with the staff member in charge of the project, and intend to file comments on the draft Environmental Impact Report in late summer or early fall.