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Busy summer ahead for Diablo Canyon 

The debate over the future of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant rages on this summer with a series of upcoming meetings highlighting the many facets of the plant that will be under review.

On June 21 and 22, the Diablo Canyon Independent Safety Committee (DCISC) will hear a long-awaited report by Dr. Robert Sewell about the threat of tsunamis and landslides to the plant’s operation. A draft of the 63-page report was made public in 2014, where Sewell outlined 13 potential landslides scenarios that could impact the plant. The meeting will take place at the Avila Lighthouse Suites.

The DCISC submits an annual report in November or December for the previous fiscal year that outlines committee members’ conclusions and recommendations regarding Diablo Canyon’s operational safety. Pacific Gas & Electric, the operator of the plant, is required to respond to the concerns raised in the report, and if the DCISC isn’t satisfied with a response, it can raise an issue with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will also be in town on June 22, for its annual public outreach meeting at the Embassy Suites in SLO city, from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

In Sacramento, the State Lands Commission will convene on June 28 to consider whether Diablo Canyon needs a full environmental review for a new lease on plant infrastructure. The meeting can viewed online at the State Lands Commission website.

Then on July 18, the California Energy Commission will hold a workshop in Sacramento about the future of nuclear power in California.

Also this summer, Senate Bill 968 will be voted on in the state Assembly. Penned by Sen. Bill Monning (D-Carmel), the bill requires a full analysis of the local economic impacts if Diablo Canyon were to shut down. The bill passed the Senate unanimously in early June. It will get a first vote in an Assembly committee on June 22. 

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