US Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) on 11 August submitted to the California Public Utilities Commission a joint proposal calling for the shutdown of California’s only remaining NPP. A number of environmental organisations and labour unions joined PG&E in the proposal to close the two units at Diablo Canyon by 2025. The plan would replace Diablo Canyon’s 2,160MWe with a combination of renewable sources, energy storage, better energy efficiency and changes to the power grid. PG&E plans to pay nearly $50 million to San Luis Obispo County to help offset property taxes that would decline because of the plant closing.
PG&E officials believe re-licensing the plant and operating it until 2044 will be more expensive than adopting the joint proposal. The proposal anticipates declining costs for renewable power, as well as lower demand from customers.
Following the shuttering of the San Onofre NPP in January 2012, Diablo Canyon is the last MPP operating in California. According to the most recent data from the California Energy Commission, nuclear power accounts for 9.2% of the state’s power mix.