- Southern California Edison, San Diego Gas & Electric and consumer representatives including The Utility Reform Network, the Office of Ratepayer Advocates, Friends of the Earth, and the Coalition of California Utility Employees have agreed to a revised though still unannounced allocation of costs for the closure of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS).
- The groups’ initial agreement, which apportioned $1.4 billion to the utilities and $3.3 billion to consumers, was rejected by California Public Utility Commissioner Mike Florio and Administrative Law Judges as not equitable for ratepayers.
- In addition to putting more burden on the utilities, the CPUC asked for revisions in how insurance monies will be apportioned, how monies recovered in legal actions against Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the maker of the defective steam generators that caused the closure, will be apportioned, and how monies earned from the sale of San Onofre assets will be handled.
SONGS was closed for repairs in January 2012 and permanently shuttered in 2013 after the defective steam generators costing $680 million leaked small amounts of radiation.
Since the loss of SONGS' 2,200 megawatts of generation, the California Independent System Operator has met Southern California's load with natural gas, coal, demand side efficiencies, and the state’s growing renewables capacity.
Though consumer representatives had agreed to the initial settlement, a ratepayer spokesperson agreed with the CPUC’s decision to impose greater responsibility on the utilities.
The spokesperson added that the CPUC should impose a cost burden on SCE and SDG&E, just as it did with the $1.4-billion fine it imposed on Pacific Gas & Electric Co. for the fatal 2010 San Francisco area natural gas explosion.
The full CPUC is expected to finalize the revised agreement in October.