Mothers for Peace

Mothers for Peace

San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (SLOMFP) is a participant in the anti-nuclear movement in California which is depicted in the anti-nuclear Dark Circle for its activity in the early years of protests against the Diablo Canyon Power Plant (DCPP). [1] DCPP was the first nuclear power plant to have its license suspended, which resulted from disclosure that they installed safety systems incorrectly, and in the film Mothers for Peace takes credit for delays which prevented the plant from going online prior to the discovery of the errors.


Current activities

Interest in issues with which SLOMFP contend have received considerable heightened public interest subsequent to the Fukushima nuclear accidents. With discovery of the Shoreline Fault, SLOMFP has expressed heightened concern about Diablo Canyon earthquake vulnerability. The primary current roles of SLOMFP consists of a website, outreach efforts of Jane Swanson,[2] the current spokesperson, fundraising, and litigation. Discovery of a new earthquake fault near DCPP re-energized the anti-nuclear movement in San Luis Obispo county, and Swanson travelled to Santa Barbara and took part in a forum at the Faulkner Gallery of the Central Library on June 30, 2011. The meeting was attended by Supervisor Janet Wolf and co-hosted by the Nuclear Ages Peace Foundation and the Santa Barbara chapter of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. SLOMFP was traumatized by an alleged embezzlement[3] of $31,000 by their former treasurer, who was prosecuted and appeared in SLO criminal court in November for pre-trial procedures.[4] Despite this, and its history of civil disobedience, SLOMFP contends that it possesses security clearances such that the NRC should grant it access to information on terrorism vulnerabilities of DCPP with respect to nuclear spent fuel storage.[5] Swanson frequently discusses various forms of vulnerability, specifically challenging the adequacy of the no-fly zone policies putatively in place over Diablo. For instance, in an interview with KCSB's radio journalist Cathy Murrillo, Swanson contends that according to the FAA it is not a no-fly zone but merely a pilot advisory not to loiter. [6] She frequently cites outside experts such as the Union of Concerned Scientists or the National Academy of Science.


The SLOMFP commenced litigation of five contentions [7] of which four were accepted to proceed. The litigation before the Atomic Safety Licensing Board has been placed on hold as of the Order of June 7, 2011. This delay has no bearing on the merits but has been proclaimed as a victory by anti-nuclear activists even though it had originally been requested by Pacific Gas & Electric.[8] The primary coordinator of the litigation is Elizabeth Apfelberg, who is also Treasurer, whom their website bills as a "lay attorney". Apfelberg has been with SLOMFP since 1973. [9] They also employ attorney Diane Curran. [10] Swanson was quoted by an environmentally oriented online journalist as summarizing their intent as follows: “Our goal, with the services of our attorney in Washington D.C., Diane Curran, is to ensure that safety issues pertaining to both the reactors and the radioactive wastes at Diablo Canyon are fully studied before the NRC considers PG&E’s application for license renewal.”[11]

Four contentions

The SLOMFP litigation claims that:

  • PG&E ‘s application lacks crucial information on the seismic risks to Diablo.

Seismic studies of the newly discovered fault are due to be done in 2013.

SLOMFP contends that those reports must be complete before any calls are made regarding earthquake risks.

  • PG&E has an “adverse trend” of chronic errors in the management and cannot

identify and correct current problems, despite elaborate measures undertaken

by PG&E as documented on public TV hearings at which SLOMFP members posed numerous questions.

SLOMFP claims that aging effects (corrosion, degradation) will defeat the engineers.

  • PG&E is not dealing with airborne environmental impacts of potential spent

fuel pool accidents, and is thus in violation of NEPA (the National Environmental Policy Act). [12]


  1. ^ Paul Wolff , Dianne Conn , Judith Evered. Protest Diablo: Living and Dying Under the Shadow of a Nuclear Power Plant - Living and Dying Under the Shadow of a Nuclear Power Plant. Createspace (12/05/2010). ISBN 1453636196. 
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  5. ^ In some contexts, the contention is that their attorney has top secret clearance, but there is no reliable substantiation of that claim. From the SLOMFP website: The NRC claimed that security considerations ruled out a hearing, even though at a closed hearing only those with the required security clearance would be present. MFP attorney Diane Curran has the necessary clearance|
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  9. ^ Murrillo interview, KCSB, prior to June 30, 2010 Faulkner appearance
  10. ^
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  12. ^

See also

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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