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OPINION: Smell Smoke? Could Be Radiation in Potential Nuke Plant Accident.

If you can smell smoke from the Camp Pendleton fire, imagine the amount of radiation you might experience in a possible San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station accident.

If you smelled smoke from the general vicinity of San Onofre, consider it a real-world example of where radiation might travel in the event of a meltdown. The only difference is that you can't detect radiation with any of your senses.

Don't forget that once it is out into the environment, you will be living with radioactive contamination for generations to come. If you live within smelling distance of , your uninsured property will become worthless and you will leave (if you are lucky), with whatever you can take with you, never to return again. It will be in the ground, the water, the air. It will be transported by wind and rain and any disturbance on the ground for the foreseeable future.

You will be forced to live like those in Japan, who for generations will be wondering if their food and water is safe to drink, or if it is even safe to go outside and play. Will your children be suffering from heart defects, bone cancer, leukemia or genetic deformation from this point forward?

We've managed to get by without San Onofre for nearly half a year now. Something tells me we don't need to live with this risk. Before the long-overdue earthquake hits here, let's start decommissioning now, put highly radioactive waste into hardened on-site storage (HOSS) instead of keeping it in unprotected pools of water. We can keep people employed at the plant for years to come doing the important task of managing the decommissioning process in a safe and efficient manner, being custodians of this menacing waste until there is a permanent storage solution away from vast populations.

It is up to us. This is the time when people will look back on our decision at this critical time in history.

Will they be wondering what the heck we were thinking if we let something tragic happen after all of the advanced warnings we got? It is a question of moral integrity. How will you respond?

Write to gary@sanclementegreen.org if you want to be on the right side of history. It will take all of us to overcome the influence of a well established and endlessly rich power monopoly. 

For hundreds of articles arranged by date providing a comprehensive history of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station over the past few years, visit our Patch topic page.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Donna Gilmore July 20, 2012 at 07:26 PM
Think it can't happen here? San Onofre has the highest rate of safety complaints to the NRC than all other nuclear power plants in the nation; and the highest rate retaliating against employees than all nuclear power plants in the nation. And the recently installed defective steam generators required more tubes to be plugged than all other reactors in the nation -- and after less than 2 years of operation. How many bad records does San Onofre need to break before the public and our elected officials and regulators take action to shut down this plant permanently? See details and charts and other government and scientific facts at http://sanonofresafety.org/

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