Despite Japan’s nuclear disaster, Dominion Virginia Power intends to proceed with seeking a license for a third nuclear unit at its North Anna nuclear power station about 70 miles southwest of Washington.
The utility, which has two nuclear units at North Anna and two more in Surry County, hasn’t decided if it would proceed with a third North Anna unit, but is getting its ducks in a row just in case.
Ironically, North Anna is in an area known for earthquakes, albeit not on the scale of one that has killed thousands in Japan. The Old Dominion has seen more than 160 earthquakes since 1977, but none greater than 5.8 in strength on the Richter scale, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
One recent earthquake occurred on Dec. 9, 2003, and was recoded at 4.5 on the Richter scale. Its epicenter was three miles beneath the surface about 30 miles southwest of Richmond.
That area is roughly 40 miles from North Anna.