NRC: Damaged Calif nuke plant may face long review

Review of restart plan for damaged San Onofre nuke plant in Calif. could take months or years

Associated Press
Plan for damaged nuke plant may need long review

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FILE - In this Sunday, June 17, 2012 file photo, Elmo Collins, regional administrator of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, speaks during an interview in San Juan Capistrano, Calif. The NRC is holding a public meeting to discuss the state of the San Onofre nuclear power plant on Monday in San Juan Capistrano. After months of investigation, federal regulators have determined that design flaws appear to be the cause of excessive wear in tubing that carries radioactive water through the power plant. (AP Photo/Grant Hindsley, File)

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. (AP) -- Federal regulators say the proposed restart of the troubled San Onofre nuclear power plant in California could require a detailed review that might last months or even years.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission Regional Administrator Elmo Collins told reporters Monday it's not yet clear if the restart plan Southern California Edison submitted last week will require an amendment to the plant's operating license.

Such reviews can involve a thicket of hearings, appeals and other steps that can take as long as two years to complete.

Collins says Edison contends such a review isn't needed. But he says the NRC considers it an "open question."

Edison plans to repair one of two damaged reactors, Unit 2, and run it at reduced power to reduce vibration that has damaged tubing that carries radioactive water.

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