AVILA BEACH – Antioch High School students got an in-depth, behind the scenes look at Diablo Canyon Power Plant on Tuesday (March 19) in a PG&E-funded field trip.
About 30 students enrolled in the school’s Academy for Engineering and Designing a Green Environment traveled six hours to and from Antioch to spend the afternoon at PG&E’s nuclear power plant in San Luis Obispo County.
The field trip was funded by a $5,000 Bright Ideas Grant from PG&E. The purpose of the visit was to enhance the students’ understanding of how nuclear power helps meet California’s energy needs in a safe, clean and efficient manner and use what they learn in the classroom.
One of the school’s teachers expressed his gratitude to PG&E staff following the tour. Christopher Mathews wrote in an email: “I’d like to thank PG&E for their openness and their top quality tour. I am an environmentalist myself, one who rides his bike to work and recycles all he can. I left the site yesterday feeling better about a world in the hands of those who would generate power using nuclear means.”
Mathews also said the tour led to several in-depth and personal conversations with students about their interest in pursuing careers in nuclear energy. One of these students said “multiple times he would love to pursue a career path with energy production and/or PG&E,” wrote the teacher. “He hasn’t shown any interest in his future,” until the tour, said Mathews.
PG&E’s Bright Ideas Grants are designed to support the understanding of renewable energy in public schools. Since the program began in 2005, nearly $2 million has been awarded to more than 300 schools throughout PG&E’s Northern and Central California service territory.