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ROSEMEAD, Calif., July 24, 2013 — The San Onofre nuclear plant has completed the final regulatory step required to formally retire its operating license.

Southern California Edison (SCE), majority owner of the nuclear plant, sent a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on Tuesday certifying that fuel has been removed from the Unit 2 reactor. A similar letter for Unit 3 was submitted on June 28. Once the NRC certifies the Unit 2 defueling, the nuclear plant will have a “possession” license rather than an operating license, and will no longer be authorized to place fuel in the reactor vessel.

“While we have safely performed this kind of defueling work for four decades, the final removal of fuel from the Unit 2 reactor marks a significant milestone in San Onofre’s history,” said Pete Dietrich, SCE senior vice president and chief nuclear officer. “We are committed to remaining focused on public health and safety as we transition through decommissioning.”

The defueling of Unit 2 was completed on July 18. The 217 fuel assemblies were moved to the spent fuel pool where they will be stored and cooled until transferred to dry cask storage. The transfer was executed entirely under water by specialized equipment, as captured in this video.

SCE announced June 7 that it would retire San Onofre Units 2 and 3, and begin the process to decommission the facility. For more information about SCE, follow us on Twitter and on Facebook.

About Southern California Edison

An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of nearly 14 million via 4.9 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.