PG&E’s Diablo Canyon nuclear plant permitted to run through Aug. 2025

PG&E’s Diablo Canyon nuclear plant permitted to run through Aug. 2025

The California State Lands Commission on Tuesday approved a lease allowing Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) to continue operating its Diablo Canyon nuclear plant through August 2025, a date the energy giant and environmental groups agreed to previous week.

However, members of the commission declared that the environmental group’s proposal for an environmental impact assessment could not be accepted because it could take years.

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom said the decision to allow PG&E to keep the nuclear plant open for the next 9 years would allow the company to avoid the mistakes of Edison International committed. Edison closed its San Onofre nuclear plant in 2013, and replaced it with a climate-changing natural gas plant.

After signing off the deal, Newsom said in a statement, “Let’s not fail the plant. Let’s have the conversation now about what that means to the workforce, what that means to the community, what that means to our efforts to provide alternative energy sources at a competitive price.”

Tom Dalzell, of a union that represents nearly 600 of the facility’s employees, said the deal promised to retrain and transit employees away from the nuclear plant, avoiding a steep change.

However, not all conservationists supported the deal. Dozens of activists said that the plant is operating in close proximity to major earthquake-causing fault lines. The Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility’s John Geesman argued that the state should have conducted strict environmental reviews before approving the lease.