The news is just coming out, but as of this morning, Southern California Edison has officially announced that they are permanently closing the "Nuclear Disaster Waiting to Happen" formerly known as the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS).
For those unfamiliar with the situation, SONGS was a nuclear plant that operated on the edge of one of the most densely packed suburban / urban areas in the country with a potential NRC-defined 50 mile fall-out zone that encompassed 8.5 MILLION Americans. The potential effects of a small or large problem at San Onofre would have likely caused a disaster unprecedented in American history.
Added to this was a recent history of repairs to the plant that had left the plant unable to operate safely, as well as discovery that the plant was sitting on an earthquake fault .,.. in a tsunami zone.
(Just as a pre-de-bunking to those who are going to comment that "tsunami's can't happen in Southern California" ... that's an urban legend, yo. SoCal is a tsunami zone.)
Anyway, due to all the troubles, San Onofre had been on "temporary shut down" for almost two years as regulators, citizens and SoCal edison fought over its future.
As of today, SoCal Edison has given up the fight. It's not yet clear how possible battles over restoration of the eco-system around San Onofre will progress, how the future of nuclear materials stored at the site will play out or how the possible dangers of nuclear particulates released by demolition will be handled; but, with the lack of nuclear plant construction in the United States, it's safe to probably assume that this will be the last nuclear plant that coastal Southern California sees for several generations.
It's not often that we get to celebrate victories that are good for the environment, the community and progress ... especially if those victories have to come at the expense of a major corporation. The scars of San Onofre (toxicity and nuclear waste) will likely last long past our lifetimes ... but, today, it's okay to celebrate a little that we've achieved a measure of progress.