Thursday, February 22 , 2018, 4:45 pm | Fair 59º

 
 
 
 

Capps Queries NRC on Nuclear Reactor Seismic Safety

Congresswoman co-signs a letter requesting information on the features of U.S. reactors

Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, joined colleague Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., on Tuesday to call for more information on the seismic safety features that are included in nuclear reactors in operation in the United States.

In the wake of the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the lawmakers sent a letter to Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Greg Jaczko requesting information on the safety-significant structures, systems and components of America’s nuclear reactors, including power plants’ ability to sustain cooling function during a total station blackout, a situation that is affecting the Japanese reactors in distress.

“We are concerned that these reactors may not have the features necessary to withstand the sort of catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that has crippled several reactors in Japan and caused a meltdown and release of the highly radioactive materials contained within them,” Capps and Markey wrote in the letter. “We are concerned that San Onofre, Diablo Canyon and possibly other nuclear reactors located in seismically active areas are not designed with sufficient levels of resiliency against the sort of earthquakes scientists predict they could experience.”

According to analysis prepared by Markey’s staff, there are eight nuclear reactors on the seismically active West Coast of the United States, and 27 nuclear reactors located near the New Madrid fault line in the Midwest. Additionally, there are 31 nuclear reactors in the United States that are of the same Mark 1 or Mark 2 design as those imperiled in Japan, and 12 of these are located in seismically active zones.

Click here for a copy of the letter to the NRC.

— Ashley Schapitl is press secretary for Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara.

 
  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.



Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >