The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Nuclear companies switch to more lucrative business – closing down reactors

OPG, Westinghouse forge nuclear alliance OPG and Westinghouse will join forces to bid for nuclear projects around the globe  Toronto Star, By:  Business reporter,   Apr 16 2014

Ontario Power Generation will join forces with Westinghouse to bid for nuclear projects around the globe, the companies announced Wednesday.

The news comes the same week that the Ontario government set up a panel headed by TD Bank chairman Ed Clark to consider privatization – or other strategies – for provincial assets.

OPG is 100 per cent owned by the province.

“Under the agreement, the companies will consider a diversity of nuclear projects including refurbishment, maintenance and outage services, decommissioning and remediation of existing nuclear power plants, and new nuclear power plants,” OPG said a release.


Westinghouse will work directly with Canadian Nuclear Partners, a subsidiary of OPG headed by Pierre Tremblay….

April 17, 2014 Posted by | business and costs, Canada, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Crooked Canadian company Lavalin trying to sell ?zombie nuclear technology to China and UK

flag-canadaCanada now dominates World Bank corruption list, thanks to SNC-Lavalin, Financial Post Armina Ligaya | September 18, 2013 Canada’s corporate image isn’t looking so squeaky-clean in the World Bank’s books — all thanks to SNC-Lavalin.Corruption’s double standard: It’s time to punish countries whose officials accept bribes

 Out of the more than 250 companies year to date on the World Bank’s running list of firms blacklisted from bidding on its global projects under its fraud and corruption policy, 117 are from Canada — with SNC-Lavalin and its affiliates representing 115 of those entries, the World Bank said.

“As it stands today, the World Bank debarment list includes a high number of Canadian companies, the majority of which are affiliates to SNC Lavalin Inc.,” said the bank’s manager of investigations, James David Fielder.

“This is the outcome of a World Bank investigation relating the Padma Bridge project in Bangladesh where World Bank investigators closely cooperated with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in an effort to promote collective action against corruption.”

As a result of the misconduct found during the probe, the Montreal-based engineering and construction firm, and its affiliates as per World Bank policy, were debarred in April 2013 for 10 years, as part of a settlement with SNC-Lavalin. And in one fell swoop, 115 Canadian firms were blacklisted by the World Bank, making Canada seemingly look like the worst offending country.

It’s quite the jump from 2012, when no Canadian companies were barred……..


Lavalin looks to expand nuclear enterprise in China SHAWN MCCARTHY - GLOBAL ENERGY REPORTER OTTAWA — The Globe and Mail, Apr. 13 2014,  SNC-Lavalin Inc. is hoping to revitalize its international nuclear business through an effort with its Chinese partners to burn reprocessed fuel in a Candu reactor as a way to reduce radioactive waste.

Officials from Candu Energy Inc. are leading a Canadian nuclear industry mission to China this week, which will include a visit Monday to the Qinshan nuclear power station south of Shanghai where two heavy-water Candu 6 reactors are in operation. Candu Energy is the former Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd., and is now wholly owned by SNC-Lavalin

The Mississauga-based nuclear vendor has been working with the Chinese operator of the Qinshan plants to fashion reprocessed fuel from the waste products of competing light-water reactors. The Candu could, in effect, become the blue box of the nuclear industry, company executives said in an interview.

“We’re very excited that this advances the discussion we can have about introducing more Candus into China,” Jerry Hopwood, the company’s vice-president of marketing and product development, said.

Candu reactors use heavy water, which includes a hydrogen isotope called deuterium, both for coolant and to moderate atomic reactions. Light-water reactors use ordinary water for both purposes.

Each approach offers different benefits, but the world market is dominated by light-water reactors, which require enriched uranium as fuel. In contrast, the heavy-water Candus can burn natural uranium as well as reprocessed fuel.

Mr. Hopwood said China now has 21 light-water reactors that produce two streams of energy-rich waste: spent fuel from the reactor itself and depleted uranium from the enrichment process. China plans to more than double its number of light-water reactors to meet the demands of its growing economy.

“Those reactors are going to produce a lot of waste fuel and China has a plan to recycle all the waste fuel from its reactor,” Mr. Hopwood said. “We believe there is a very strong opportunity to sell a significant number of Candu units in China.”

He said the partners have completed all the development and licensing work, and the Chinese operators expect to begin running reprocessed fuel in the two Candu reactors at an industrial level by the end of the year.

The company is also working with Chinese partners to modify the existing Enhanced Candu model so it will more efficiently burn the recycled fuel but also run on thorium, an abundant alternative to uranium that produces less highly radioactive waste. China has vast reserves of thorium but must import uranium, and develop a thorium-fired reactor.

As well, Candu Energy is one of two finalists in the United Kingdom’s competition to select a reactor design that will eliminate a stockpile of plutonium. “We think this work in China is paving the way for other options where Candu’s fuel-cycle ability is a benefit, notably in the U.K.,” Mr. Hopwood said.

The trade delegation will include Ontario’s Minister of Research and Innovation, Reza Moridi, who is a nuclear physicist, and several business leaders from the Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries, an Ontario-based suppliers’ group that is eager to land export and service business in the world’s fast growing reactor market.

Critics contend the Candu 6 is an outdated design that lacks safety features included in newer reactors, and that it is a technology that the international marketplace has largely rejected since the 1990s.

“So yeah, the industry is trying to say Candu isn’t dead. Never say die,” said Shawn-Patrick Stensil, a nuclear campaigner at Greenpeace Canada. “If Candu isn’t dead, it’s a zombie.”

April 15, 2014 Posted by | Canada, politics international, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Canada narrows list of possible locations for nuclear waste facility

Some were also drawn by the fact that for taking part in the selection process, they’ll get $400,000 even if they’re not chosen, providing they advance far enough in the process and a DGR is ultimately approved.


7 of 22 municipalities dropped from list of potential sites

By Rick MacInnes-Rae, CBC News Posted: Apr 09, 2014

(Interactive map showing locations of possible nuclear dump sites on link)

Canada is a step closer to picking a place to store spent nuclear fuel underground for the next 100,000 years, a project that’s backfired on some of the world’s other nuclear economies.

Despite the stigma of radioactivity, 22 Canadian municipalities expressed interest in hosting such a facility. Four have now been moved up the list for further evaluation, while seven have been rejected as not suitable. The other 11 are still in the initial assessment phase.

Final approval could take another couple of decades, but if a site is found and approval given to build a Deep Geologic Repository (DGR), the project will generate thousands of jobs, some lasting generations.

Billions would be spent constructing a vast warehouse over 500 metres underground to contain some of the most radioactive waste in the world.

Deadly byproduct

Nuclear energy has helped meet Canada’s electricity needs for more than 40 years, but a deadly byproduct has been steadily building up as a result.

There’s a growing inventory of spent uranium pellets. The radioactive pellets are stored inside long silver tubes bundled together like 24-kilogram logs.



Spent uranium pellets from nuclear reactors are stored inside long silver tubes that are bundled together like 24-kilogram logs.

Heading the search for a secure place to store those tubes is the Nuclear Waste Management Organisation (NWMO), funded by Canada’s four nuclear agencies, which describes the situation this way: “If Canada’s entire current inventory of just over two million used fuel bundles could be stacked end-to-end, like cordwood, it would fit into six NHL-sized hockey rinks from the ice surface to the top of the boards.”

At present, spent fuel is stored at seven different sites across Canada, including at the reactors it once powered. But that’s not a long-term solution, because in time those reactors will be decommissioned and dismantled.

In its quest for a site, the NWMO took the novel step of asking Canadian communities if they’d think about hosting the highly-radioactive payload.

“Well, we didn’t know what to expect” said Jo-Ann Facella, director of social research and dialogue at the NWMO.

“We put out the plan that Canadians had come forward with and the government had selected as Canada’s plan. And an important part of that plan, it emerged from Canadians, is that these facilities only be implemented in a willing host.”

What also came back were expressions of interest from 22 different municipalities, tempted in part by the promise of employment if they’re chosen. Some were also drawn by the fact that for taking part in the selection process, they’ll get $400,000 even if they’re not chosen, providing they advance far enough in the process and a DGR is ultimately approved.

Continue reading

April 10, 2014 Posted by | Canada, Reference, wastes | Leave a comment

Increasing levels of radioactive cesium in Vancouver area

Cesium-137Radio: “Surprisingly, high concentrations [of Fukushima cesium] found in Vancouver area” since ocean currents slow down — Levels are increasing — “Might be hotspots where radiation concentrates” — “Chances are high for marine life to absorb it… concern about mussels… clams, oysters” (AUDIO)

RED 93.1FM (Vancouver, BC), “The Filipino Edition”, Mar. 30, 2014:

At 4:15 in

Joseph Lopez, reporter: In the Vancouver area, as of June last year […] there are increasing levels of cesium-134, the same isotope released from Fukushima. [...]
Irene Querubin, host: I hope we’re not slowly dying by that.

At 7:00 in

Lopez: There’s a strong current called the Kuroshio current […] these are highways in the ocean […] it’s one of the strongest water currents […] and this current passes through Fukushima but it is so strong it helps keep the radiation levels in the Fukushima area lower, it blows it away. […] These radioactive isotopes, in a slower speed — because they’re slowing down in these areas like Vancouver […] where the water is not as fast as in the ocean, there’s a chance for the radioactive isotopes to settle down and be in the water and possibly be absorbed by bottom feeders. [...] The radioactive isotopes [are] not observed much in Japan, in the Fukushima area, surprisingly […] but the current pulls it away and acts as a boundary because it’s so fast. Once the speed slows down in our area, the chances are high for the marine life to absorb it.

At 11:00 in

Lopez: They’re not doing any testing right now, that’s why the public should be concerned [...] We don’t know why they’re not doing it. They should be doing it. [...] It is true that the Pacific Ocean will dilute the radiation, but what they found is there might be hotspots where this radiation might be concentrated. And surprisingly the high concentrations have been found in the Vancouver area because in these waters there’s less movement, less speed. [...] I’m surprised that Dr. Smith of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans would categorically state that there’s a zero chance of starfish die-off [being related to radioactive contamination]. It’s like saying the Titanic will never sink. [...] I would be concerned about mussels as well [...] and clams and oysters, because they are filters. [...] Remember no Hear-This-waylevel of radiation is ever safe.Full broadcast available here

April 3, 2014 Posted by | Canada, oceans, radiation | Leave a comment

Carbon tax works to reduce greenhouse emissions and benefit economy

flag-canadaHow British Columbia Enacted the Most Effective Carbon Tax in North America, the Atlantic Cities,  CHRIS MOONEY, 26 MARCH 14, Suppose that you live in Vancouver and you drive a car to work. highly-recommendedNaturally, you have to get gas regularly. When you stop at the pump, you may see a notice like the one below, explaining that part of the price you’re paying
is, in effect, due to the cost of carbon. That’s because in 2008, the government of British Columbia decided to impose a tax on greenhouse gas emissionsfrom fossil fuels, enacting what has been called ”the most significant carbon tax in the Western Hemisphere by far.”

  • A carbon tax is just what it sounds like: The BC government levies a fee, currently 30 Canadian dollars, for every metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions resulting from the burning of various fuels, including gasoline, diesel, natural gas, and, of course, coal. That amount is then included in the price you pay at the pump—for gasoline, it’s 6.67 cents per liter (about 25 cents per gallon)—or on your home heating bill, or wherever else the tax applies. (Canadian dollars are currently worth about 89 American cents).
  • If the goal was to reduce global warming pollution, then the BC carbon tax totally works. Since its passage, gasoline use in British Columbia has plummeted, declining seven times as much as might be expected from an equivalent rise in the market price of gas, according to arecent study by two researchers at the University of Ottawa. That’s apparently because the tax hasn’t just had an economic effect: It has also helped change the culture of energy use in BC. “I think it really increased the awareness about climate change and the need for carbon reduction, just because it was a daily, weekly thing that you saw,” says Merran Smith, the head of Clean Energy Canada. “It made climate action real to people.”

    It also saved many of them a lot of money. Sure, the tax may cost you if you drive your car a great deal, or if you have high home gas heating costs. But it also gives you the opportunity to save a lot of money if you change your habits, for instance by driving less or buying a more fuel-efficient vehicle. That’s because the tax is designed to be “revenue neutral”—the money it raises goes right back to citizens in the form of tax breaks. Overall, the tax has brought in some $5 billion in revenue so far, and more than $3 billion has then been returned in the form of business tax cuts, along with over $1 billion in personal tax breaks, and nearly $1 billion inlow-income tax credits (to protect those for whom rising fuel costs could mean the greatest economic hardship). According to the BC Ministry of Finance, for individuals who earn up to $122,000, income tax rates in the province are now Canada’s lowest.

    So what’s the downside? Well, there really isn’t one for most British Columbians, unless they drive their gas-guzzling cars a lot. (But then, the whole point of taxing carbon is to use market forces to discourage such behavior.) The far bigger downside is for Canadians in other provinces who lack such a sensible policy—and especially for Americans. In the United States, the idea of doing anything about global warming is currently anathema, even though addressing the problem in the way that British Columbia has done would help the environment and could also put money back in many people’s pockets. Such is the depth of our dysfunction; but by looking closely at British Columbia, at least we can see that it doesn’t have to be that way……….

  • The tax has actually become quite popular. “Polls have shown anywhere from 55 to 65 percent support for the tax,” says Stewart Elgie, director of the University of Ottawa’s Institute of the Environment. “And it would be hard to find any tax that the majority of people say they like, but the majority of people say they like this tax.”It certainly doesn’t hurt that the tax, well, worked. That’s clear on at least three fronts: Major reductions in fuel usage in BC, a corresponding decline in greenhouse gas emissions, and the lack of a negative impact on the BC economy……..
  • The bottom line, then, is that BC’s experience provides an exclamation point at the end of the long list of reasons to like a carbon tax. Perhaps the leading one, in the end, is that it’s a far simpler policy option than a cap and trade scheme, and is, as Harvard economist and Bush administration Council of Economic Advisers chair N. Gregory Mankiw has put it, “more effective and less invasive” than the sort of regulatory approaches that the government tends to implement.Indeed, economists tend to adore carbon taxes. When the IGM forum asked a group of 51 prominent economists whether a carbon tax would be “a less expensive way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions than would be a collection of policies such as ‘corporate average fuel economy’ requirements for automobiles,” assent was extremely high: 90 percent either agreed or strongly agreed. Yale economist Christopher Udry commented, “This is as clear as economics gets; provides incentives to find minimally costly ways to reduce emissions.”

    “Totally basic economics!” added Stanford’s Robert Hall.

    Since 2012, British Columbia has not raised the carbon tax further. Instead, the government agreed to freeze the rate as it is for five years. And no wonder: BC is now far ahead of most of its neighbors, and most of North America, in taking action to curtail global warming………

  • In the meantime, BC can boast of the crown jewel of North American climate policy. “BC now has the lowest fuel use in Canada, the lowest tax rates in Canada, and a pretty healthy economy,” says the University of Ottawa’s Stewart Elgie. “It works.”

April 2, 2014 Posted by | Canada, climate change | Leave a comment

Ontario Power Generation underestimated radiation levels for planned waste storage site

text-radiationBruce waste site radiation understated, says former OPG scientist A scientist who formerly worked for OPG says the company has understated radiation levels in waste destined for a storage site near Kincardine By:  Business reporter,  Feb 28 2014  A former research scientist with Ontario Power Generation says the company has “severely underestimated” the level of radioactivity of material destined for a waste storage site near Kincardine.

Dr. Frank R. Greening’s letter to a federal panel reviewing the site says that OPG has understated the extent of radiation in material destined for the proposed site, “sometimes by factors of more than 100.”…… Continue reading

March 1, 2014 Posted by | Canada, wastes | Leave a comment

Nova Scotia’s renewable energy success

Nova Scotia set to exceed renewable energy targets: minister By   Global News HALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s Minister of Energy says the province is on track to exceed its renewable energy goals.

In 2010, the government passed a law requiring 25 per cent of the province’s power to come from renewables — like wind and hydro — by 2015.  The law’s second target is set at 40 per cent by 2020.

“We have no concerns about meeting that 25 per cent,” said Andrew Young, Nova Scotia’s Minister of Energy.

“In fact, we expect that that will be exceeded.”

 Nova Scotia’s electricity production comes from a mix of sources. Renewable energy makes up 18 per cent of that mix, according to the latest estimate from Nova Scotia Power. That estimate might be low and outdated, energy department officials said. A request has been made by the department for Nova Scotia Power to reassess the balance of resources.

A more accurate measure of how much renewable energy Nova Scotia generates is expected in two to three weeks.Nova Scotia’s 40 per cent renewable target for 2020 should be easily met as well. “The fact that we have the Maritime Link coming on stream,” said Younger, “we’re not concerned about meeting the 40 per cent target.”

Younger’s comments come the same week the government announced plans to reinvigorate Nova Scotia’s tidal power opportunities. Companies looking to sell tidal power to the grid can now apply for feed-in tariffs, outlined by a Utility and Review Board decision.In March, the government will grant access to two undersea berths for companies to test tidal technology and possibly begin feeding small amounts of tidal power to the grid.

January 28, 2014 Posted by | Canada, renewable | Leave a comment

Canada joins the scramble to sell uneconomic nuclear power to India

India, Canada aim for closer ties , THE HINDU, SANDEEP DIKSHIT  , 15 DEC 13  After 40 years, the countries are entering into partnership in civil nuclear energy


India and Canada are aiming for closer partnerships in civil nuclear energy and hydrocarbons with the dissipation of distrust that had kept them estranged for 40 years after India conducted a nuclear test in 1974……relationship would be supplemented by a “collaborative approach” in the civil nuclear sector, decks for which have been cleared with the signing of a civil nuclear accord and finalising of the administrative arrangements, High Commissioner for Canada to India Stewart Beck told The Hindu…….

“We are now putting in force a civil nuclear partnership. India has several reactors derived from Canadian technology but since then it has gone on its own path of development. We are now in a situation where the two can talk to each other. There is a huge need in India of Uranium which we can sell,” said Mr. Beck……

December 16, 2013 Posted by | Canada, India, marketing | Leave a comment

US politicians and indigenous people fight Lake Huron nuclear waste dump

Saugeen Ojibwe and U.S. Politicians Oppose Nuclear Waste Burial Near Lake Huron, Indian Country, Martha Troian12/12/13
A controversial proposal to bury nuclear waste a half mile from Lake Huron’s shoreline in Ontario is proceeding over indigenous objections in a plan that has repercussions on both sides of the U.S.–Canada border.


Opposition to the plan, which would inter low- and intermediate-level radioactive waste about 2,230 feet underground in solid rock, is sparking opposition from Indigenous Peoples and U.S. politicians alike. …… Continue reading

December 15, 2013 Posted by | Canada, opposition to nuclear, USA, wastes | 1 Comment

Canada joins the scramble of marketing nukes to India

marketing-itemCanada wants relaxation in India’s nuclear liabilities rules THE flag-canadaHINDU, 1 Dec 13 Unless the provisions regarding a plant operators’ liabilities in case of nuclear damages are relaxed, foreign marketig-nukescompanies will not come in a big way, a senior Canadian government official has said.

“The way the liability has been framed in the Civil Nuclear Liability Act deviates from the global standards and it is our view if it is not modified, it is hard to see any foreign supplier coming in a big way to India,” Canadian consulate general Richard Bale told PTI on the sidelines of the nuclear summit here over the weekend.

As per the Act, an operator of a nuclear plant (so far only NPCIL) will be liable for damages worth up to Rs. 1,500 crore. However, there is a provision for the right of recourse for the operator. If written into the contract, the operator can claim the liabilities from the manufacturer and supplier. Most of the suppliers, domestic as well as international, are concerned over whether they will have to bear over Rs. 1,500 crore towards in the event of nuclear disaster.

“It is the government’s prerogative to determine what the public policy should be. But on the one hand the government is saying it wants to expand the nuclear power programme, on the other they have put in place a framework that makes it difficult to achieve that goal,” Mr. Bale said……

December 2, 2013 Posted by | Canada, India, marketing of nuclear | Leave a comment

Canada’s nuclear industry not dead yet, but dying?

dead-horseNuclear faces long road as Ontario maps its energy future SHAWN MCCARTHY   The Globe and Mail Nov. 25 2013 Canada’s nuclear industry is looking to persuade Ontario that it’s not dead yet. Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli will launch in the coming weeks a revised long-term flag-canadaenergy plan that will spell out how the current government expects to feed the province’s appetite for electricity over the next two decades. The new road map comes as the nuclear sector – which will supply more than half the province’s electricity this year – battles to maintain its share of that market by proposing long-term, multi-billion-dollar projects in order to refurbish existing plants and sell the province new reactors.

But the industry is confronting a myriad of challenges: including assumptions about weak demand growth as a result of to economic shifts and greater efficiency and conservation; the low price of natural gas that is fuelling a boom in gas-fired power in the United States; the Liberal government’s aggressive commitment to build new wind and solar capacity, and even the possibility of buying electricity from Quebec.

Taken together, those factors could add up to a sharply diminished role for nuclear in Ontario, even as the country’s domestic reactor company, SNC-Lavalin Inc.’s Candu Energy Inc., struggles to make sales abroad. ……..

Some critics question whether even the refurbishments are needed, let alone the new reactors. Nuclear power suffers from that fact that its high, upfront capital costs must be amortized over 30 years in the case of refurbishments, and 50 to 60 years in the case of new reactors. Given the rapid technology transformation, a long-term bet on nuclear is fraught with the risk of the province being saddled with an expensive white elephant, York University’s Mark Winfield said…….

Ontario is currently moving towards a much greater reliance on wind power, backed up by natural gas generation when the wind turbines aren’t producing as much as expected……

November 26, 2013 Posted by | business and costs, Canada | Leave a comment

Saskatechewan embroiled in dangerous nuclear politics

flag-canadaAUDIO: Saskatchewan’s Nuclear Addiction Contaminates Both Politics and the People Research News Hour Episode 42 By Michael Welch Global Research, November 07, 2013

Saskatoon is the headquarters of Cameco. Formed from the merger of two Crown Corporations in 1988, and ultimitely privatized in 2002, Cameco is one of the world’s largest Uranium producers accounting for 14% of overall world production.[3][4]

Saskatoon is also the headquarters of Areva Resources Canada Inc, a uranium mining, milling, and exploration company.[5]

To say that the nuclear sector in Saskatchewan has influence would be an understatement. For government officials, the nuclear industry represents a significant economic lever involving not only mining, but fueling of future tar sands projects.

Concerns however have arisen about the ways in which the sector is skewing initiatives in the public interest.

In a 2012 article for Briarpatch Magazine, D’Arcy Hande presented his research outlining how the nuclear industry, the government, and the University of Saskatchewan have all colluded to ensure the continued expansion and protection of uranium development in the face of public disapproval. Hande outlines a climate of corporatism nullifying critical
appraisals of Saskatchewan’s nuclear ambitions, and exposes conflicts of interest at the government and university level.

Hande spoke to the Global Research News Hour about how this collusion came about.

About 2 million spent nuclear fuel rods sit above ground at nuclear sites in Eastern Canada. The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) has a plan to turn Northern Saskatchewan into a long-term repository for these nuclear wastes.

Three communities – Creighton, English River, and Pinehouse, after being subjected to bribes and intense lobbying, have signed on to this plan.

The Committee for Future Generations was formed in May of 2011 to monitor and resist this plan. One of its representatives, Candyce Paul, who lives in one of the affected communities spoke to us in Saskatoon about her concerns about the plan, the crackdown on dissenting voices, and the stakes both for her community, and for the wider region.

Partial Transcript of interview with Candyce Paul………

November 8, 2013 Posted by | Canada, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Ontario govt has no idea of the costs of refurbishing nuclear reactors

Ontario Liberals flying blind on nuclear reactor file, NDP says CBC News 23 Oct 13, Horwath charges Liberals ‘haven’t learned’ from $1.1-billion gas-plant fiasco The Canadian Press  Oct 23, 2013 The provincial Liberal government “learned nothing” from the $1.1-billion cost of killing two gas plants and is ready to refurbish nuclear reactors without knowing the final price, NDP Leader Andrea Horwath charged Wednesday.

‘Apparently the sky is the limit when it comes to the price’ –NDP Leader Andrea Horwath on proposed nuclear refurbishments

The Liberals recently abandoned plans to build two new nuclear reactors, after spending $180 million in preparatory work, but said they would refurbish existing reactors at the Darlington power station east of Toronto to extend their service life until 2055.

“The procurement for it is going to take place in stages, and the final cost is not known at this particular point in time,” Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli said.

The NDP released a statement from the Ministry of Energy showing “a final timeline and cost will not be known until the regulatory and technical scope is determined” and contracts are signed, sometime in

Check out CBC’s special report on electricity in Canada, including this profile of power in Ontario.

“We were shocked when the minister responded to our request by saying, ‘We’re spending $950 million on contracts we’ve already signed but we can’t tell you what the final cost is going to be,’ ” Horwath said. “That is frightening.”

It’s hard to believe the Liberals are prepared to waste more money on the electricity file after the auditor general reported the costs of their decisions to cancel gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga could top $1.1 billion, added Horwath…..

October 25, 2013 Posted by | Canada, politics | Leave a comment

Ontario decides against new nuclear reactors

scrutiny-on-costsOntario backs away from plans to buy new nuclear reactors ADAM RADWANSKI The Globe and Mail, Oct. 10 2013, Ontario’s government will shelve plans for a major new investment in nuclear power, according to industry and government sources.

Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals have decided against spending upwards of $10-billion to buy two new nuclear reactors as had been planned when Dalton McGuinty was premier, and will commit only to refurbishing existing ones, the sources told The Globe and Mail. The decision appears to be the latest blow to the nuclear flag-canadaindustry, which is already facing a decline in international demand, safety concerns after 2011’s earthquake-induced meltdown at Japan’s Fukushima plant, and the emergence of comparatively cheap natural gas. As the most nuclear-reliant province in Canada and the only one with plans to acquire new reactors, Ontario had been held up as a source of hope for prospective builders, including Candu Energy Inc., the once-mighty division of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited that is now a subsidiary of SNC-Lavalin.

As a result of the change in plans, nuclear power – which accounted for 56 per cent of Ontario’s total energy supply in 2012 – could end up with a somewhat smaller share of the supply mix. At the same time, the decision reflects stagnant demand due largely to the struggles of the province’s manufacturing sector.

Ruling out a nuclear procurement in the foreseeable future, rather than just putting one off as Mr. McGuinty did when a potential deal fell through four years ago, also appears aimed at serving Ms. Wynne’s political goals……..

October 11, 2013 Posted by | Canada, politics | Leave a comment

Cancer causing radiation in fish must be increasing

radiation-in-sea--food-chaiReport raises fresh concerns about radiation levels in Japanese fish Canada AM: Cancer-causing radiation in fish Gordon Edwards of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility discusses the danger, and whether the information will prompt changes. Staff 
 Monday, October 7, 2013 
Two and a half years after the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster in Japan, concerns are again being raised about radiation levels in fish caught in the Pacific Ocean.

A report by the Vancouver weekly newspaper, The Georgia Straight, suggests at least 800 people worldwide could develop cancer from eating fish caught in Japan’s waters – and about half of those cases will be fatal.

About 500 of the cancers will occur in Japan, while 75 will be due to Japanese fish exports to other countries, including Canada, the newspaper estimates. It also quotes several nuclear experts who say that estimate is likely conservative and the real toll could be closer to 80,000 cancers.
Gordon Edwards, president of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, notes that the estimate is based only on the fish that has been eaten up to now.

“People are going to continue to consume these fish and the toll could rise higher,” he told CTV’s Canada AM Monday from Montreal……..

Some fish samples tested to date have had very high levels of radiation: one sea bass sample collected in July, for example, had 1,000 becquerels per kilogram of cesium.While Canadians are exposed to radiation every day from the sun and the environment, Edwards notes that radioactive cesium doesn’t exist in nature at all and it’s not known if there is any safe level.

“The background level is zero. So this is all comes from the Fukushima disaster,” he said of the fish.The Canadian Food Inspection Agency tested fish exports from Japan for several months, but dropped the testing in June 2011, just three months after the disaster.

Edwards says he does not understand why the CFIA is not taking the issue more seriously.”Canadian authorities are really doing us all a disservice by not following and monitoring this much more closely. They’re treating it as though it’s a kind of ho-hum situation, but in fact, it was a major event worldwide,” he said.

“And it should be studied very more carefully because that’s the only way we’re going to learn what the effects of this may be for the future.”

October 8, 2013 Posted by | Canada, oceans | Leave a comment


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