Urgent Alert

Diablo Canyon Power Plant

Safe, clean, reliable energy since 1985

Diablo Canyon Power Plant (DCPP) is a safe, clean, reliable and vital energy resource for California.

  • DCPP provides low-cost, carbon-free electricity for more than 3 million people
  • DCPP plays a key role in allowing PG&E to deliver some of the cleanest energy in the nation to its customers.

 

All plant operations are overseen and monitored by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

  • The plant is licensed to operate Unit 1 into 2024 and Unit 2 into 2025.

 

In September 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation seeking to extend operations at DCPP beyond its current license period.

  • This will help ensure electricity reliability and combat climate change as California continues toward its clean energy future.
  • In November 2023, in line with state direction, PG&E submitted an application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to renew DCPP’s operating licenses.
  • The NRC’s review of the application is a multi-year process with opportunities for public involvement.
  • More information about the license renewal process can be found at the NRC’s website: Reactor License Renewal | NRC.gov

 

Delivering for California hometowns

PG&E is proud to be part of the communities of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.

 

  • On average, PG&E and our employees provide hundreds of thousands of dollars in programmatic grants and charitable donations every year within San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.
  • These funds are a combination of personal employee pledges to nonprofit organizations through: 
    • The company's "Campaign for the Community" program
    • Programmatic grants and charitable donations for community improvement projects provided by PG&E
  • PG&E employees also volunteer thousands of hours of personal time each year to: 
    • After-school athletic programs
    • Environmental organizations
    • Churches
    • Other community organizations

About the facility

 

The Diablo Canyon Power Plant (DCPP) sits on approximately 1,000 acres on the Pacific coast. It has operated safely since 1985. The DCPP contains two Westinghouse Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) units that are licensed until 2024 and 2025, respectively.

  • The two units produce a total of 18,000 gigawatt-hours of clean and reliable electricity annually.
  • This is enough energy to meet the needs of more than 3 million Northern and Central Californians (nearly 10% of California's energy portfolio and 20% of the power that PG&E provides throughout its service area).

 

DCPP has continued to safely produce clean and reliable energy without greenhouse gases (GHG).

  • Every year it operates, DCPP saves 6-7 million tons of GHGs from entering the atmosphere via conventional generation resources.

 

Built to withstand extreme natural disasters, including earthquakes, Diablo Canyon’s design features state-of-the-art seismic supports.

  • Nuclear Regulatory Commission inspectors continually inspect and assess the facility. This ensures that the facility’s systems are operating safely and efficiently each and every day.
  • Safety will always be the most important responsibility at PG&E and Diablo Canyon. The plant has an excellent safety operating record. The NRC's current assessment places it among the highest performing plants in the nation.

 

Serving our planet

DCPP emits no GHGs during the production of electricity, while providing safe and reliable energy to millions of Californians. Diablo Canyon generates:

  • 17 percent of California's zero-carbon electricity
  • Nearly 9 percent of the state's total electricity supply

 

Diablo Canyon is located on one of the most scenic and habitat-rich coastlines in the country.

  • It is surrounded by roughly 12,000 acres of land.
  • The land, ocean and intertidal zones are managed by PG&E. They are largely maintained in a natural state and home to many species of plant and animal wildlife. 
  • PG&E's responsible stewardship of this precious natural resource allows for scientists and others to explore its habitat and ecology.
  • Our marine biological study is the longest running study of its kind in the U.S.

 

As part of our stewardship practices and commitment to the community, we provide hiking opportunities through two spectacular coastal trails on this land: the Pecho Coast and the Point Buchon trails.

 

Quick links

 

Used fuel storage

 

Fuel in both the wet and dry storage formats is stored in accordance with stringent requirements put into place by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

  • In the first quarter of 2020, PG&E issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a new spent fuel storage system to address how fuel is handled going forward.
  • If this technology can be implemented, it would expedite the used fuel storage process by several years.

 

How DCPP safely stores fuel
  1. After nuclear fuel is used to produce electricity at Diablo Canyon, it is placed in wet storage pools located inside the plant's fuel handling building.
  2. The fuel is then moved to the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSI) site where it's safely stored in a dry storage format.
    • This facility is located east of the power plant. 
    • It has a separate license from the U.S. NRC.
  3. The fuel is stored at the Diablo Canyon ISFSI on an interim basis. It will eventually be transferred to the federal government's repository—once established—for long-term storage.

Status of continued operations at Diablo Canyon Power Plant

 

PG&E is scheduled to discontinue its power operations at Diablo Canyon upon the expiration of the Unit 1 and Unit 2 operating licenses, in November 2024 and August 2025, respectively.

 

However, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation in September 2022 seeking to extend operations at DCPP beyond its current license period.

  • This will help ensure electricity reliability and combat climate change as California continues toward its clean energy future.
  • In November 2023, in line with state direction, PG&E submitted an application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to renew DCPP’s operating licenses.
  • The NRC’s review of the application is a multi-year process with opportunities for public involvement.
  • More information about the license renewal process can be found at the NRC’s website: Reactor License Renewal | NRC.gov.

 

Get involved

Stay informed through the resources below. You may also contact PG&E with questions or input at diablodecommissioningquestions@pge.com.

 

Decommissioning leadership team

The DCPP Decommissioning team is located in San Luis Obispo County. Contact the team by email at tom.jones@pge.com.

 

Maureen Zawalick

Maureen Zawalick

Vice President of Business and Technical Services

 

  • Overall strategic direction and oversight
  • Asset project strategy
  • Regulatory and risk management

 

Brian Ketelsen

Brian Ketelsen

Director of Business and Technical Services

 

  • Decommissioning planning
  • Decommissioning implementation
  • Project planning, engineering and estimating

 

Tom Jones

Tom Jones

Senior Director of Regulatory, Environmental and Repurposing

 

  • Regulatory activities
  • Community outreach and engagement
  • Governmental oversight Humboldt Bay Power Plant regulatory and community

Future uses for the Diablo Canyon Power Plant site

PG&E intends to begin active decommissioning of the Diablo Canyon Power Plant (DCPP) in 2025 and to complete the project in one decade. We are currently soliciting ideas for the future repurposing of the facilities and the repurposing or conservation of the lands. Download the PG&E Outreach Plan for Diablo Lands Conservation and Facilities Repurposing (PDF)

Nuclear Power

Video tours

View different areas of the property through our video tours of DCPP's facilities and land. New videos are produced periodically, check back soon to view them.

View videos

Get in touch

PG&E is facilitating a public engagement process. If you have questions about these facilities, please email diablocanyonrepurposing@pge.com.

About the Diablo Canyon Decommissioning Engagement Panel

PG&E created the Diablo Canyon Decommissioning Engagement Panel (DCDEP) in 2018 to foster open and frequent dialogue with the community on matters related to the DCPP deactivation. Panelists are community members from across the Central Coast who represent diverse viewpoints. Visit the DCDEP's independent website.

While PG&E pursues the steps to continue operating DCPP until 2030 as directed by the state, PG&E will continue to provide opportunities for community input regarding future decommissioning plans and potential future uses of the Diablo Canyon site. PG&E and the DCDEP are currently accepting applications to join the local, non-regulatory stakeholder group. There are several positions subject for appointment or reappointment consistent with the Panel's Charter. The 30-day application period ends March 5. Members of the community who are interested in participating on the Panel are encouraged to apply here.

The Diablo Canyon Decommissioning Engagement Panel will review information and provide direct input on behalf of the local community to PG&E on Diablo Canyon Power Plant decommissioning plans and activities.

 

The Panel will help inform PG&E’s site-specific decommissioning plan on future land use and repurposing recommendations. The consideration of the plan will be the subject of an ongoing regulatory process that will begin with the filing of the Nuclear Decommissioning Cost Triennial Proceeding in December 2018 at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). PG&E plans, pending CPUC approval, to continue to engage with the panel and solicit input from the public on its plan during this multi-year review process.

 

The Panel's Strategic Vision is a stand-alone document that is available to the community, stakeholders and regulatory agencies to provide information about the decommissioning process and recommendations from the Panel that reflect the community’s wishes for what will occur before, during and after decommissioning. Read the Strategic Vision.

In 2016, PG&E announced plans to close Diablo Canyon at the expiration of its Nuclear Regulatory Commission operating licenses in 2024-2025. PG&E will focus on continued safe and reliable operations at Diablo Canyon, while also preparing decommissioning plans that consider community input and meet regulatory requirements.

 

Contact us

Public comment: Comment Form

Engagement Panel Facilitator: Chuck Anders at facilitator@diablocanyonpanel.org

General inquiries: engagementpanel@pge.com

 

Frequently asked questions

Get answers to frequently asked questions about the DCDEP

Charter (PDF, 7.1 MB)

Diablo Canyon Engagement Panel FAQ (PDF, 225 KB)

Meetings

 

Public meetings provide the opportunity to learn about the various aspects of the decommissioning process and allow the Panel and the public to provide input to PG&E. During meeting times, you may watch the live stream.

 

Return to this page for the latest details as meetings are subject to change.

Panel members

The panel is comprised of representatives from the local community who broadly reflect the diverse community stakeholder viewpoints in proximity to DCPP. A formation committee that included representatives from the local community assisted PG&E in the panel selection process. Panel members are listed below and you may also review panel members' profiles (PDF).

 

  • Bill Almas, San Luis Obispo
  • Dena Bellman, South County
  • Ernest Gerry Finn, Paso Robles
  • Trevor Keith, Ex Officio Member and County of San Luis Obispo Director of Planning and Building
  • Jessica Kendrick, Atascadero
  • Scott Lathrop, Ex Officio yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini (ytt) Northern Chumash Tribe of San Luis Obispo County and Region
  • Patrick Lemieux, San Luis Obispo 
  • Michael Lucas, Morro Bay
  • Frances Romero, Guadalupe
  • Linda Seeley, Los Osos
  • Bruce Severance, Grover Beach
  • Kara Woodruff, San Luis Obispo
  • Maureen Zawalick, (PG&E)
  • Chuck Anders (Facilitator)

DCPP decommissioning/relicensing news and resources

Learn about PG&E and DCPP programs for seismic and tsunami safety

 

Extensive scientific re-evaluations performed at the direction of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) continue to show that Diablo Canyon can safely withstand earthquakes, tsunamis and flooding that could potentially occur in the region.

 

Safety is, and always will be, a core value for PG&E and the Diablo Canyon Power Plant. That's why seismic, tsunami and flooding safety was at the forefront in the design of the facility.

 

It's also why PG&E maintains a Long Term Seismic Program (LTSP) for Diablo Canyon. The LTSP is a unique program in the U.S. commercial nuclear power plant industry. It is comprised of a geosciences team of professionals who partner with independent seismic experts on an ongoing basis to evaluate regional geology and global seismic and tsunami events to ensure the facility remains safe. In September 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation seeking to extend operations at DCPP beyond its current license period to help ensure electricity reliability for all Californians. As part of this legislation, PG&E will conduct an updated seismic assessment and submit the results to the California Public Utilities Commission.

 

Because of the LTSP and decades of industry-leading research, the seismic region around Diablo Canyon is among the most studied and understood areas in the nation.

 

Learn more about Diablo Canyon's seismic safety

 

We are often asked if Diablo Canyon can withstand earthquakes. The answer is yes. To learn how, watch "Yes, Diablo Canyon Can Safely Withstand Earthquakes."

 

Watch DCPP's seismic safety video on YouTube
Download a transcript (PDF)

New and extensive scientific re-evaluations performed at the direction of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) continue to show that Diablo Canyon can safely withstand earthquakes, tsunamis and flooding that could potentially occur in the region.

 

This updated seismic evaluation provides additional confirmation the plant is designed to withstand the ground motions, or shaking, from earthquakes. As recently as 2019, the NRC determined that no plant systems, structures, and components important to safety were in need of updating to protect against earthquakes.

 

PG&E's flooding hazard re-evaluation determined that the plant's key safety systems and components continue to be safe from tsunamis, including those generated from underwater landslides and earthquakes.

As part of its response to the Fukushima event in Japan in 2011, the NRC directed all U.S. commercial nuclear power plants to perform a reassessment of the potential seismic and flooding hazards to their facilities.

 

The seismic hazard analysis was performed using an NRC-mandated process known as the Senior Seismic Hazard Analysis Committee, or SSHAC. Under the SSHAC process, existing and new seismic information was peer-reviewed and publicly evaluated by leading third-party, independent seismic experts.

 

The flooding hazard re-evaluation involved the use of the latest NRC guidance and methodologies and independent expertise to determine the maximum potential waves and rainfall that could impact Diablo Canyon. It also examined the plant's ability to withstand storm flooding.

The updated seismic assessment represents a more extensive evaluation of the seismic hazard than previously performed. Prior evaluations determined the ground shaking from an earthquake on a particular fault in the region, based on historical records and geological evidence, and then compared this information against structures, systems and components at the facility to ensure they could withstand seismic ground shaking.

 

Using the NRC's SSHAC process, independent seismic experts publicly re-evaluated existing and new seismic information, including data acquired during the advanced seismic studies recently performed near Diablo Canyon, to re-evaluate how earthquakes could potentially impact the facility.

 

This process included examining the probability of earthquakes occurring on individual and multiple geologic faults. The result is a more thorough assessment of the seismic hazard, providing additional confirmation that the plant is seismically safe.

PG&E's flooding and tsunami hazard update involved the use of the latest NRC guidance and methodologies to determine the maximum potential waves and rainfall that could impact Diablo Canyon.

 

The re-evaluation, utilizing independent expertise, determined that the plant's key safety systems and components continue to be safe from tsunamis, including those generated from underwater landslides and earthquakes.

 

The plant's design is also deemed appropriate to withstand expected storm flooding. In addition, measures were identified and implemented to address a rare, theoretical event of excessive rainfall and a quick build-up of water in some plant locations that greatly exceeds any known precipitation event recorded in the site's history.

DCPP video tours

Take one of PG&E's video tours of DCPP's facilities and the surrounding property.

More about Diablo Canyon

How Diablo Canyon works

Discover how nuclear power plants work. Watch PG&E's informative YouTube video.

Emergency planning brochure

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Emergency preparedness

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