Updated: Oct 11, 2022
Los Angeles, CA
The Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant is located 12 miles southwest of San Luis Obispo, California, and less than a mile from an offshore fault line. In addition to the inherent dangers surrounding nuclear power, Diablo Canyon was not required to include earthquakes in its emergency response plan, despite living in one of the most earthquake-prone places on Earth. Yet California Governor Gavin Newsom is pushing to extend the plant’s operations past its 2025 retirement deadline.
CSPG’s Poster of the Week was made for one of the many protests that drew up to 40,000 during the 1970s and 80s. On August 6, 1978, the 33rd anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, anti-nuclear activists climbed
over the wall of the plant and carried in tree saplings to transform the grounds. The protests continued after Diablo Canyon went online in 1985.
In 1981, an inspection found that two supports were improperly installed during construction. In 2020, a degraded pipe caused a water leak. The Three Mile Island meltdown of 1979, the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011 should be warnings enough of the precarity and horrifyingly destructive capacity of nuclear power plants.
Don't Nuke The Climate
World Information Service on Energy (WIRE)
Offset, Circa 2000
The second poster raises the impact of nuclear energy on the climate. Proponents of nuclear energy argue that “the plant provides low-cost, carbon-free electricity for more than three million people and ensures that PG&E delivers some of the cleanest energy in the nation to its customers” (Business Insider). Because of the current Climate Catastrophe, energy grids globally are increasingly strained by people needing to stay cool and safe. Governor Newsom worries that renewable sources of energy will not be enough to supply Californians with energy during peak summer usage, thus turning to Diablo Canyon for insurance.
Resorting to a non-renewable resource that contaminates the Earth for hundreds of thousands of years and risks destroying entire ecosystems in the event of a meltdown is not the answer to our current climate and energy crisis.