The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will hold hearings on how the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has handled a recommendation to shut down Pacific Gas & Electric's Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in California due to earthquake risks. Nuclear expert Michael Peck, the plant's former lead on-site inspector, said that no one can confirm whether the plant's key equipment can resist an earthquake from a nearby fault. PG&E spokesman Blair Jones said that the plant is "seismically safe," adding in an e-mail that it was extensively retrofitted in the late 1970s to deal with the core issue of earthquake ground motion.

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