The Ivanpah solar project could take until 2018 to hit peak production. The sun isn\u2019t shining as much as expected, according to AP. At present, it\u2019s at about half capacity. Clouds, contrails, and weather are having a greater-than-expected impact. Additionally, the plant\u2019s running its gas-fired boilers for steam four times as much as planned. The plant opened in February. Federal nuclear rules are not set up for decommissioning reactors, like those at San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, according to outgoing Nuclear Regulatory Commission chair Allison Macfarlane. In a National Press Club speech Nov. 17, she said that plants in decommissioning, like San Onofre, have requested exemptions from federal rules. \u201cI question whether exemptions remain appropriate at a time when multiple plants have entered the decommissioning process. I believe it\u2019s time for the NRC to develop regulations specific to the decommissioning of nuclear power plants, both to help utilities through decommissioning and to structure public expectations of the process,\u201d Macfarlane noted. Also, she stated that spent fuel\u2014like that at San Onofre, Diablo Canyon, and Humboldt Bay\u2014\u201cdoes not receive the attention and respect it needs.\u201d The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission directed regional grid operators, like the California Independent System Operator, to report whether they have enough natural gas to fuel electric power plants. The directive comes amid a national move from using coal to fuel electric plants to relatively cleaner natural gas. \u201cWe learned that fuel assurance is critical to ensuring energy markets support reliability,\u201d noted commission chair Cheryl LaFleur. The commission\u2019s Nov. 20 move is aimed at providing more specific information on regional operators\u2019 fuel sources. Los Angeles Department of Water & Power managers ignored warnings that a new billing system needed additional work before \u201cgoing live\u201d last year and almost immediately melting down, according to a report presented to the muni\u2019s board of commissioners Nov. 18. They also underestimated the number of call center employees needed to clean up the resulting mess, in which people were grossly overbilled. Some with automatic payment arrangements even had their checking accounts emptied out by the department due to wildly inflated bills and when they called the muni to correct the errors could not get assistance. The report also criticized the department for having a team of managers handle the billing system launch, instead of one individual manager empowered to make quick decisions. In a remarkable bit of timing, the California Public Utilities Commission called a \u201cgreat shakeout\u201d earthquake drill in the middle of the Independent Peer Review Panel for Seismic Studies at the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant Nov. 17. In the actual meeting, geologists from Diablo\u2019s owner, PG&E, explained the progress the utility\u2019s made in mapping fault lines near the facility. There\u2019s \u201ca lot more detail now than we could see 20-30 years ago,\u201d said one. Instead of two dimensions \u201clike x-rays\u201d the modeling that\u2019s available as a result of compliance with state law AB 1632 is more like a CT scan, noted PG&E. The commission\u2019s approved $63 million in funding for seismic data gathering, although it\u2019s still being disbursed.