Continued Safe Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel
San Onofre, like nuclear power plants throughout the United States, has a process for safely managing and storing spent nuclear fuel.
SCE has moved all the spent nuclear fuel at San Onofre to robust, dry storage systems: sealed stainless-steel canisters that are housed in reinforced concrete structures. Passive dry storage of spent nuclear fuel is the safest form of on-site storage. Eliminating the reliance on actively cooled spent fuel pools reduces the risk of NRC-analyzed accident scenarios, dropping to zero the number of events that can result in an offsite release of radiological material.
Dry Fuel Storage at SONGS
San Onofre has two systems for dry fuel storage. The first is an Orano-NUHOMS horizontal storage system. SCE began loading fuel into this system from Units 1, 2 and 3 in 2003. It holds 50 canisters of spent
fuel. SCE just completed loading fuel into the Holtec UMAX system. It holds 73 canisters of spent fuel from Units 2 and 3.
Inspection and Maintenance of Spent Nuclear Fuel Canisters
SCE has developed industry leading approaches to spent fuel canister inspection and maintenance. We’re committed to properly maintaining the canisters for transport to a federally licensed off-site location.
Working Toward Off-site Storage
SCE recognizes that efforts to relocate San Onofre’s spent nuclear fuel off-site must proceed in a thoughtful, forward-thinking, and responsible way, ensuring that relevant interests are recognized and heard.
We're developing a strategic plan to explore alternatives for relocating SONGS spent fuel to an off-site facility.
This issue has consumed time by the decade and dollars by the billion, with a solution proving elusive. We need to change that, together, and move this fuel out of Southern California.
Doug Bauder, SCE Chief Nuclear Officer, San Diego Union-Tribune, Aug. 4, 2020