California's Earthquake-Prone Nuclear Reactors
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The earthquake and the tsunami have created potential meltdowns at nuclear power plants on the shores of northeastern Japan. That's raised questions about the two big nuclear plants on the shores of California. Are they earthquake-safe? Should they be re-licensed to run decades longer than originally planned? We know we're in earthquake country, but what parts of Southern California are also vulnerable to tsunamis? Are warning systems in place? On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, disaster and recovery in Japan.
Banner image of Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant: emdot/Flickr
California's Earthquake-Prone Nuclear Reactors ()
It's illegal to build any new nuclear plants in California, but two are already in place, generating a huge amount of the state's electricity. San Onofre, in San Diego County, is run by Southern California Edison. It's due to be re-licensed to operate in 2013. Diablo Canyon, in San Luis Obispo County, is operated by the PG&E and is in the process of re-licensing now.
Tsunami Danger ()
Friday's earthquake and tsunami were orders of magnitude bigger than Japan was prepared for. We hear about the likely death toll, the economic consequences and the likelihood of a tsunami along the California coast. Costas Synolakis is Director of the USC Tsunami Research Center.
- Costas Synolakis: USC Tsunami Research Center
Disaster and Recovery in Japan ()
A second reactor explosion occurred today at a nuclear power plant in the Fukushima Prefecture, 150 miles north of Tokyo on Japan's main island of Honshu. Now there's concern there could be a third.
If you'd like to contribute to relief efforts in Japan, our panelists suggest:
- Matt Wald: New York Times, @MattWaldNYT
- Jason Kelly: American financial writer
- Sheila Smith: Council on Foreign Relations
- Marcus Noland: Peterson Institute for International Economics
Which Way L.A.? is made possible in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation, which supports study and research into policy issues of the Los Angeles region.
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