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« WATCH: Nigel Farage declares VICTORY in EU referendum with barnstorming speech | Main | Sweden decides it’s not so easy to give up nuclear power »

Last California Plant to Close as Nuclear Power Struggles

The rooftop panels and churning turbines of booming solar and wind energy are helping make U.S. nuclear power plants, with all the safety fears and rising costs they bring, obsolete, some experts say. So much so that California's largest utility and environmental groups struck a deal Tuesday to shutter the last facility in the state.

The move marks the end of California's era of nuclear-power plants and comes as the operators of the country's aging nuclear facilities confront rising repair bills at a time when sources of clean, safer energy cost less.

Competition from a glut of natural gas and surging solar and wind production also has dampened enthusiasm in Europe for nuclear power. So did the 2011 disaster in Fukushima, Japan, when an earthquake and tsunami led to meltdowns and radioactive releases at a nuclear plant.

But China is among the countries still building nuclear power plants, and a U.S. industry group says nuclear remains a vital power source despite California's deal.

The 31-year-old Diablo Canyon plant between Los Angeles and San Francisco will shut down by 2025, decades after its location near seismic faults on ocean bluffs helped spark the environmental movement against nuclear power. Pacific Gas & Electric Co. announced plans for the facility in the 1960s.

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 Can California survive and prosper without nuclear power - I wonder...

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