REGION — Dismantlement of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS) will begin next month, according to the plant’s owner.
Southern California Edison mailed an Advance Notice of Deconstruction on Jan. 22 to 12,000 residents in communities within a 5-mile radius of the plant, according to spokesman John Dobken.
Deconstruction will start no earlier than Feb. 22 and will include the dismantlement of buildings, containment domes and other above-grade structures within Units 2 and 3 at SONGS. The work will also include the partial removal of offshore conduits, which are the large pipes that would bring in and release ocean water for cooling purposes in the plant, and removal of offshore buoys and anchors.
SONGS has been a fixture in coastal Southern California for more than 40 years. The nuclear plant was retired in 2013, and since then talk of its complete removal has been underway.
Edison received a coastal development permit from the California Coastal Commission in October to dismantle the plant.
Initial work will begin within the plant’s boundaries and should have small impacts on surrounding recreational areas, according to Dobken.
Deconstruction of SONGS will continue for the next eight years.
According to Edison Vice President and Chief Nuclear Officer Doug Bauder, Edison will be “a good neighbor” to those who use the nearby recreational spaces like San Onofre State Beach providing quarterly updates about the dismantlement process going forward.
As The Coast News has previously reported, the two spent fuel dry storage facilities will remain on site until the federal government is ready to store the fuel in a permanent repository that has yet to be established.
The deconstruction notice includes contact information for Deconstruction Liaison Liese Mosher, who can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (800) 332-3612.
Samantha Nelson covers Oceanside, Camp Pendleton and the decommissioning San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. She earned her journalism degree from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, and has previously reported for The Athens Messenger in Athens, Ohio, and USA Today in McLean, Virginia. Follow her on Twitter: @samm1son