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California consumers, shareholders to foot bill to shut down nuclear power plant via fayobserver

LOS ANGELES – Consumers will pay about $3.3 billion and shareholders will pay about $1.4billion under a settlement approved Thursday on costs stemming from the premature closure of the San Onofre nuclear power plant.

The vote by the California Public Utilities Commission was 5-0.

At issue has been who should take the financial hit for the early demise of the plant located between Los Angeles and San Diego – company shareholders or customers.

The settlement of who should pay the $4.7 billion cost from the closure stems from negotiations among operator Southern California Edison, minority owner San Diego Gas & Electric Co. and consumer advocates. Critics argued that the deal shortchanged ratepayers.

Consumers will pay the estimated $3.3 billion in costs over 10 years, including for power purchased after the plant shut down.

[…]

San Onofre shut down for good last year after a long fight over whether it was safe to restart. It had been idle since January 2012, after a small radiation leak led to the discovery of unusual damage to hundreds of tubes inside virtually new steam generators.

A federal investigation after the 2012 leak concluded that a botched computer analysis resulted in generator design flaws that were largely to blame for the unprecedented wear in the tubing that carried radioactive water.

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