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Utility Customers Owe $3.3 Billion for Shuttered California Nuclear Plant

The California Public Utilities Commission has ruled on the issue of who should pay the remaining costs after a radiation leak forced an early end to California's San Onofre nuclear plant in 2012.
November 25, 2014, 11am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Aaron Orlowski reports that "[electricity] customers will pay $3.3 billion for the premature closure of the San Onofre nuclear power plant, according to a settlement approved Thursday."

The ruling by the California Public Utilities Commission means that customers of Edison will pay off that bill until 2022. "Meanwhile, San Onofre’s owners will pay $1.45 billion" and accept a "significantly lower return for the rest of its investment in San Onofre."

San Onofre, a nuclear plant located along the California coast at the northern end of San Diego County, was shut down in 2012 after regulators discovered a radiation leak. The unexpected closure came just a year after Edison and San Onofre's minority owner San Diego Gas & Electric invested in new steam generators, i.e., the reason for the hefty remaining costs.

Last May, the San Onofre plant was making news for difficulties arising from the plant's decommissioning, including the remaining $3.3 billion expense and the storage of highly radioactive nuclear waste. 

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Published on Thursday, November 20, 2014 in Orange County Register
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