[ RadSafe ] They are ecstatic in San Francisco - bad news for nuclear power (Roger Helbig)

Mark Miller marklmiller20 at gmail.com
Wed Jun 22 16:47:01 CDT 2016

Here are some astute comments made by Rod Adams to a recent Forbes article
by Amory Lovins:


Rod Adams

I listened to the press conference that the parties to the agreement to
divide the spoils of closing Diablo Canyon held yesterday.

There are a few fine points that your post does not touch.

1. PG&E’s model for the future cost of operating Diablo Canyon indicated
that the cost per kilowatt hour was going to double as a direct result of
CURRENT state renewable portfolio energy policies. That was going to happen
because the company would be forced to LOWER the amount of power it could
produce from the plant in order to meet the state’s requirement of
producing 50% of its electricity from qualified renewable energy sources.
Capacity factor dropping from current 92% to 50% virtually doubles the
price per kilowatt-hour since costs are essentially fixed.

In 2015, PG&E produced about 58% of its power from either qualified
renewable, large hydro or nuclear sources, but the new state law is silent
about nuclear and large hydro as emission free sources.

2. The agreement DOES NOT specify replacement of Diablo Canyon’s 17,000
GW-hrs/yr of emission-free electricity. It only requires two “tranches” of
energy efficiency and renewable energy procurements before 2031 that
together total just 4,000 GW-hrs. I know you consider yourself a math wiz,
but it takes amazingly creative figuring to say that 4,000 is even remotely
close to 17,000. It’s less than 25%!

3. PG&E could not confirm NRDC’s savings estimate. They repeatedly stated
that they had no idea what the total cost of the decision was going to be,
just that it would be less than continuing to operate Diablo Canyon under a
scenario where they had to keep operating less and less each year. Again,
that reduced operation has NOTHING to do with plant aging or reliability
and EVERYTHING to do with a state law that forces the company to buy
unreliables instead of using its own nuclear power.

4. Your summary of Tony Earley’s resume left out one important feature that
made him eminently qualified to sign this deal on behalf of PG&E
stockholders. He was the Chief Counsel for LILCO when that company
negotiated a bailout from the state that protected corporate investors
while leaving Long Island ratepayers holding the liability for Shoreham.

Please explain how this situation is supposed to save taxpayers, ratepayers
or our common environment. It had better serve as an example for all of the
rest of the states to AVOID at all costs.

Rod Adams Publisher, Atomic Insights

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