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Letter to NRC Chairman re: Private Meeting on 4/6/12

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U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Office of Chairman Gregory Jaczko

Chairman Jaczko:

The purpose of this letter is to review and confirm what we discussed at our private meeting in Dana Point, California last Friday, April 6, 2012. The general feeling from the group in attendance was that this was a positive step towards rebuilding the trust between the NRC and the public. We would like to thank you for making this unprecedented and positive experience possible.  At the same time, we want to clearly express our expectations of the NRC that we, the undersigned, have regarding the specific handling of the steam generator issue, especially in light of recent findings.

There was a consistent message from all of those in attendance. We left the meeting with certain expectations of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.  First: “Root Cause” and “Extent of Conditions” which the NRC clearly stated will be determined by Edison and confirmed by the NRC before proceeding to approve restart of either reactor. The “Root Cause” analysis must be conducted on reactor units 2 and 3. As stated in the Fairewinds report, the Steam Generators installed in both units are identical and therefore require the same consistent approach. Second: following the transparent public meeting promised by the NRC, there will be an adequate period set aside (30 days) for the public to review your findings before Edison and the NRC expose the public to any further unnecessary risk. Third; we also expect to have the NRC’s findings reviewed by our third party nuclear experts prior to any restart.

Since our meeting there have been more recent revelations about who knew what and when, concerning the similar conditions of both reactors. Now we hear that Edison agrees that both reactors’ generators show signs of the same problems, yet the message we’ve been getting from the NRC ever since the Augmented Team arrived on site is that the two reactors have different problems and that Unit 2 might be able to start up before Unit 3. This recent disclosure confirms the analysis conducted by Fairewinds Associates that has been making the case that both reactors must be treated identically. Therefore, in honoring your commitment to transparency and full disclosure we request prompt access to all original data in electronic form regarding steam generator inspections conducted since the shut down of unit 2 on January 7th, 2012, and for both reactor units. As citizens living within a few miles of the San Onofre plant we feel justified in seeking maximum disclosure of data that concerns the future safety of this nuclear site. We have the means through independent experts to be able to conduct analysis of such data and feel its disclosure would demonstrate the NRC's willingness to listen and respond to the public. Files can be sent to

Together, the various public representatives at this meeting made the reasons for doubting the effectiveness of the NRC very clear, citing numerous reasons and examples of lessons not being learned from Fukushima. We wish to continue the open dialog established on Friday, April  6th and hope that the need to “trust but verify” is seen as a positive step in rebuilding public confidence in the NRC. Our fates are tied to your ability to act on our behalf above all else. We hope you will take these stipulations as seriously as we do. Without these conditions being met, you can anticipate significant push back from elected representatives who are also mandated to put public safety first, along with those leading various citizen groups who have the same concerns.

Signatures and comments to follow.


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