Edison Applies for SONGS License Amendment

Southern California Edison is moving quickly in its effort to modify a license at its San Onofre nuclear plant and restart unit 2 at reduced power before the high-demand summer season.

On Monday, Edison announced it had filed a draft license amendment request with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission after discussing the move with the agency last week. Premature steam generator tube wear has kept both units at the plant offline for more than a year. Studies are ongoing. And while the NRC continues its analysis of whether the plant can return to normal operation, the utility has asked for the amendment allowing unit 2 to run at 70 percent power for five months before shutting down for further tube inspections.

"We are considering the proposed voluntary amendment as the best path to get unit 2 safely up and running before the hottest months of the year hit our region," SCE President Ron Litzinger said in a release.

According to SCE, the lower operating power will prevent accelerated tube-to-tube wear. Three independent companies analyzing the steam generators have concluded they can perform safely at reduced power. The utility has asked the NRC to rule on the amendment by the end of May.

Anonymous comments will be moderated. Join for free and post now!