nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Big task ahead, as Canada’s nuclear industry must try to protect 100s of thousands of citizens against radiation

flag-canadaRadiation protection pills delivered by end of 2015, Star.com  New rules from the Canadian Nuclear Safety
potassium-iodate-pillsCommission dictate that iodine thyroid-blocking pills must be delivered to homes and workplaces near nuclear plants by the end of next year. By:  Business reporter, Oct 14 2014

People living and working within 8 to 16 kilometres of a nuclear power plant should have radiation protection pills in their hands by the end of 2015, under new federal regulations.

But Durham’s Medical Officer of Health says it will be “very tight – extremely tight” to meet the deadline.New rules from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission dictate that iodine thyroid-blocking pills must be delivered to homes and workplaces near nuclear plants by the end of next year.

The pills, often known as potassium iodide pills or KI pills, inhibit the thyroid gland from absorbing radiation.Nuclear plant operators must pay the cost of buying and distributing the pills, but provincial and local health officials will be working out how to get them into the hands of tens of thousands of people from Scarborough to Clarington in time for the deadline.

Dr. Robert Kyle, Durham’s medical officer of health, said his unit already given stocks of pills to pharmacies and to institutions like schools, daycares, and police and fire departments……..

The pills will have to be sent out with readily understandable directions in different languages, he added.And someone will have to track new residents to make sure they get their pills.

The new rules also require pills to be stocked in institutions over a wide area beyond the immediate zones around the plants, he said.

“It’s a very tall order,” Kyle said. “It sounds like a year is a long time, but it may take a while to get this all planned and resourced.”

Toronto officials will also have to be involved, since eastern Scarborough is within 10 kilometres of the Pickering plant, he noted. (Lenore Bromley of Toronto Public Health took a different tack, however, saying that distributing the pills is “not something that would fall within our domain.”)

Kyle said he hasn’t tallied up the number of residents within 10 kilometres of the Pickering and Darlington plants, but said “you may be talking about 100,000.”

Ontario Power Generation operates the Pickering and Darlington nuclear plants east of Toronto.

Company spokesman Neal Kelly said it has cost about $180,000 to buy and distribute pills to pharmacies and institutions under the old rules.

“Under this new regulation, there will be significant costs associated with public communications and delivery,” Kelly said.

He wouldn’t name a figure. OPG will have to foot that bill, but who does the work on the ground is still being worked on, he said.

http://www.thestar.com/business/tech_news/2014/10/14/radiation_protection_pills_delivered_by_end_of_2015.html

 

October 15, 2014 Posted by | Canada, health | 2 Comments

Canada’s public to get iodine pills in wide area around nuclear reactors

flag-canadaNuclear plants must give iodine pills to nearby residents, regulator says  Radiation protection pills will be pre-distributed to people and businesses located near nuclear plants, according to a new regulation announced by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission on Friday. The Star, By:  Business reporter,  Oct 10 2014

Residents and businesses near nuclear plants must be given radiation protection pills as a precautionary measure, says Canada’s nuclear regulator.

The pills must be pre-distributed, before any accident occurs, in co-operation with government authorities.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission announced the new measure Friday, as it published a new regulation. The pills, which contain potassium iodide, block the thyroid gland from absorbing radiation.

potassium-iodate-pills

The regulation requires nuclear operators to pre-distribute the pills to “all residences, businesses and institutions” within the primary area where the plume from a radiation release would likely spread.

The radius of the area may vary from location to location but “is typically sized in the range of eight to 16 kilometres,” according to the regulation. A 10-kilometre radius from the Pickering nuclear plant would extend from the eastern part of Scarborough to Whitby.

In a larger zone — typically 50 to 80 kilometres — nuclear plant operators must make sure that there is a stock of pills “ready for prompt distribution” and “located so that it can be efficiently obtained by, or distributed to, members of the public when required,” the regulation says.

An 80-kilometre zone would embrace all of Greater Toronto………The regulation also requires nuclear plant operators to deliver emergency preparedness information “in hard copy annually to every residence, business and institution” within the pill pre-distribution area. http://www.thestar.com/business/2014/10/10/nuclear_plants_must_give_iodine_pills_to_nearby_residents_regulator_says.html

October 11, 2014 Posted by | Canada, safety | Leave a comment

First Nations Quebec-Labrador (AFNQL) reaffirm their opposition to uranium mining on their land

nuke-indigenousQuebec and Labrador First Nations draw the line against uranium By: Henry Lazenby 27 Sep 2014 TORONTO (miningweekly.com) – At a workshop on uranium development hosted by the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador (AFNQL) on Friday, First Nations from across the region reaffirmed their opposition to uranium development on their territories and throughout Quebec.

In March 2013, the AFNQL passed a resolution inviting its members to voice their opposition to uranium development and to declare a blanket rejection of the uranium exploration and exploitation on all First Nation territories. This followed a resolution adopted by the Grand Council of the Crees in August 2012 declaring a permanent moratorium on uranium development in Cree territory.

“The exploration and exploitation of uranium constitute major and irreversible threats to our population, our territories and the resources they contain. As First Nations, we have a sacred duty to protect our territories and ensure the sustainable development of our natural resources,” Timiskaming First Nation Chief Terence McBride said.

“Our experience here today has clearly demonstrated that the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador are united in our opposition to uranium development in our territories. We strongly encourage all the First Nations and citizens in Quebec to clearly and publicly express their opposition to uranium development,” Cree Nation Grand Chief Matthew Coon Come added.

In March 2013, Quebec’s Minister of the Environment announced a moratorium on uranium exploration or mining permits until the Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement (BAPE) had completed hearings on the uranium industry in Quebec and provided recommendations to the Minister. The BAPE’S mandate began in May.

This week, the BAPE completed the second phase of its inquiry, during which it heard from various ministries, experts and industry representatives on a number of topics relating to uranium and its associated risks. The third phase of the BAPE hearings were scheduled to start in November, at which time members of the public would have the opportunity to make oral and written submissions to the BAPE.

Anyone wishing to make submissions must file a notice of intention, available on the BAPE website, by October 16.

October 1, 2014 Posted by | Canada, indigenous issues, Uranium | Leave a comment

Resolution in US Senate opposing Canadian nuclear waste dump plan for Lake Huron area

Flag-USAflag-canadaSenate resolution urges Obama administration to oppose Canadian nuclear waste near Lake Huron Star Tribune, : Associated Press  September 21, 2014  TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — U.S. Sen. Carl Levin has introduced a resolution urging the Obama administration to oppose a Canadian proposal to bury radioactive waste less than a mile from Lake Huron.

A federal panel in Canada is taking testimony on the plan to store low- and intermediate-level waste from nuclear power plants in rock chambers more than 2,000 feet below the surface.

Ontario Power Generation proposes storing low- and intermediate-level waste from nuclear power plants in rock chambers at a site in Kincardine, Ontario, about 140 miles north-northeast of Detroit. ………

According to the resolution, “more than 40 million people in Canada and the United States depend on the fresh water from the Great Lakes for drinking water” and “a spill of nuclear waste into the Great Lakes could have lasting and severely adverse environmental, health and economic impacts on the Great Lakes and the people that depend on them for their livelihood.”

The resolution, co-sponsored by Sens. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.; Mark Kirk, R-Ill.; and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., urges President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry “to take appropriate action to work with the Canadian government” to prevent building of a permanent nuclear waste repository within the Great Lakes Basin.

U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Flint., sponsored a similar measure in the House earlier this month.http://www.startribune.com/politics/national/275945461.html

September 22, 2014 Posted by | Canada, politics international, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Citizens’ groups call for ombudsman in battle over planned Lake Huron area nuclear waste dump

Lake-Huron,-Bruce-County,-OLake Huron nuclear waste battle: Citizen groups want ombudsman called in http://kitchener.ctvnews.ca/lake-huron-nuclear-waste-battle-citizen-groups-want-ombudsman-called-in-1.2015050#ixzz3Dt9SdLgr Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press September 19, 2014 TORONTO – Groups fighting a proposed nuclear waste storage site on the shores of Lake Huron called on Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne on Thursday to establish penalties for municipalities who break the law by holding secret meetings.

In addition, the groups — Save our Saugeen Shores and the Southampton Residents Association — called on Ontario’s ombudsman to review the circumstances that led to a report critical of Bruce County council for meeting nuclear waste representatives without telling anyone or documenting the discussions.

“This was a major error of provincewide importance in light of the evidence of an 8.5-year egregious disregard of the law and the public’s right to open and transparent government,” Rod McLeod, the group’s lawyer, said in a statement. The current end result trivializes important provincial legislation designed to preserve transparency in municipal government.”

Last month, an outside investigation concluded the municipal politicians in the region that is home to one of the world’s largest nuclear power plants violated provincial law.

However, the report concluded the officials did not violate the Municipal Act deliberately, something the groups said was nonsense.

“The evidence was overwhelming that the mayors knew exactly what they were doing and that it was unlawful,” their statement said.

Overall, McLeod said, the investigation failed to treat the violations with the seriousness deserved and the lack of sanctions for a breach in the Municipal Act is not good enough. Wynne had no comment but a spokesman for the Municipal Affairs Minister Ted McMeekin suggested changing the current legislation was not in the cards because municipalities already have the power to establish penalties for failing to follow the rules.

“Ultimately, all elected officials have a responsibility to follow provincial legislation and are accountable to the people who elected them,” Mark Cripps said in an email.

Ombudsman Andre Marin said there was nothing he could do under current legislation but called the report “flawed.”

Ontario Power Generation is proposing to build a massive underground nuclear waste site at the Bruce nuclear power plant near Kincardine, Ont., a plan that has drawn opposition from environmentalists, aboriginal groups and legislators in Michigan.

At issue were numerous meetings of the “community consultation” advisory group, comprising the mayors who sit on county council and representatives of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization and Ontario Power Generation, that began in 2005.

The citizen groups alleged the discussions were kept secret because the politicians feared damaging their electoral fortunes and pointed to informal notes from one meeting in February 2010 that showed a mayor fretting about “a negative backlash at the polls.”

The probe by Amberley Gavel — a company based in London, Ont., that helps municipalities with closed-meeting procedure investigations — concluded the public never knew about any of the meetings.

It also found the discussions had a marked influence on the mayors’ decisions regarding the radioactive waste project despite their contention the meetings were simply information sessions at which they passed no motions.

The citizen groups said the province should be reviewing the conduct of Ontario Power Generation.

They also said the county response — to ask staff to provide annual reminders about the law requiring open meetings — was “appallingly weak.”

Council members have “thus far show defiance with no hint of remorse,” the statement said

September 20, 2014 Posted by | Canada, wastes | Leave a comment

USA Congressman Dan Kildee fighting proposal for nuclear waste dump near Lake Huron

any-fool-would-know

 

 

they must also stop making this radioactive trash

U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee to fight proposed Canadian nuclear waste facility on shores of Lake Huron M Live, By Sam Easter | seaster@mlive.com on August 28, 2014 BAY CITY, MI — Standing at the helm of the tall ship Appledore IV, U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee said the schooner based in downtown Bay City was the “perfect” place to make a few points about protecting the Great Lakes from nuclear waste.

Kildee spoke during the afternoon of Thursday, Aug. 28, addressing plans by Ontario Power Generation to build a storage facility for low- to intermediate-level nuclear waste at a proposed underground facility near Kincardine, Ontario.

“Canada is a friend, but it is a country with vast land mass, and I’m sure that the best place for a nuclear storage facility cannot be less than a mile from the shores of Lake Huron,” he said, regardless of whether officials say it’s scientifically sound. A point of contention among Michigan’s state and federal legislators for at least a year, the proposed facililty has also met strong opposition from local governments — officials from Bay County and Essexville both passed resolutions opposing the facility this month.

Kildee on Thursday announced he plant to introduce a Congressional resolution when legislators return from recess on Monday, Sept. 8, that — while lacking regulatory power — would voice the opinion of Congress on the matter. The resolution states that 40 million people in both countries depend on the Great Lakes’ drinking water, and that a nuclear spill “could have lasting and severely adverse environmental, health and economic impacts on the Great Lakes.”

Lake-Huron,-Bruce-County,-O

If adopted, the resolution would discourage the Canadian government from building a nuclear storage site in the Great Lakes Basin and urge both President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry to work with their Canadian counterparts to find an alternate location……..

Multiple officials were present for Kildee’s announcement, including Laura Ogar, Bay County director of environmental affairs and community development, as well as Terry Miller, chairman of the local environmental group Lone Tree Council.

Shirley Roberts is the executive director of BaySail, which owns and operates the Appledore. She said that the Appledore was an appropriate place for the presentation, and that she support’s Kildee’s fight against the facility.

“I have grave concerns about the concept,” she said. http://www.mlive.com/news/bay-city/index.ssf/2014/08/us_rep_dan_kildee_announces_pl.html

August 29, 2014 Posted by | Canada, opposition to nuclear, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Safety problems, toxic spill, in Canada’s uranium industry

flag-canadaNuclear watchdog requests safety checks after B.C. mine breach CTV News, Dene Moore, The Canadian Press August 19, 2014 VANCOUVER -- A toxic spill from a British Columbia mine has prompted the country’s nuclear watchdog to request a series of checks at uranium facilities.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission will discuss the failure of the tailings pond at the Mount Polley gold and copper mine during a meeting Wednesday.

In the interim, the commission has asked the uranium mining and milling operations it oversees to ensure that all necessary inspections and monitoring are in compliance with licence conditions……..

The breach sent 10 million cubic metres of waste water and 4.5 million cubic metres of silt into a network of salmon-bearing lakes and rivers near Likely, 600 kilometres northeast of Vancouver.

The reason for the failure at Mount Polley is not yet known: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/nuclear-watchdog-requests-safety-checks-after-b-c-mine-breach-1.1966932#ixzz3AzIudlBn

August 20, 2014 Posted by | Canada, incidents, Uranium | 1 Comment

Toxicity of planned wastes raises anxiety about Lake Huron nuclear dump scheme

Lake Huron nuclear dump scheme in trouble Hamilton Spectator by  Thomas Walkom 7 Aug 14, Ontario’s plan to bury nuclear waste beside Lake Huron is running into heavy weather.

Lake-Huron,-Bruce-County,-O

Ontario Power Generation, the Crown corporation behind the proposed dump site for low and intermediate level radioactive waste, has publicly acknowledged that its long-term safety plans are based, in part, on new technologies that have not yet been invented.

As the Star’s John Spears reported this week, that explanation hasn’t endeared itself to the small but politically important aboriginal communities near the proposed Kincardine dump site.

In a brief to the federal review panel that will eventually rule on the plan, the Saugeen Ojibway Nation reminds OPG of its assurance that no nuclear waste dump will be built without aboriginal consent

Will that consent be given? The first nation doesn’t say. But in its brief, it does express profound unease with what it calls OPG’s vague and open-ended scheme.

Plans for this so-called deep geological repository at Kincardine have been in the works since 2005.

Initially, the proposed dump was supposed to house waste such as the rubber gloves used by nuclear workers — items with relatively low levels of radioactivity.

Right now, nuclear waste from Ontario atomic power generating plants is stored on the surface.

But once federal hearings started last fall, OPG changed tack. It announced it wanted to double the size of the underground dump to roughly 400,000 cubic metres in order to accommodate waste that will be produced when the province’s existing nuclear plants are taken apart.

This so-called decommissioning waste, which includes components such as pressure tubes (but not nuclear fuel), will remain highly radioactive for thousands of years.

Critics cried foul. The three-member federal panel hearing the proposal ordered OPG to better explain how it would handle this more difficult waste.

It also told the Crown utility to look into why a similar U.S. nuclear waste facility near Carlsbad New Mexico — cited by dump proponents as a model — suffered two accidents in February……….http://www.thespec.com/opinion-story/4737032-lake-huron-nuclear-dump-scheme-in-trouble/

August 8, 2014 Posted by | Canada, wastes | 1 Comment

Secret Ontario meetings on nuclear waste plan broke the law

secret-agent-SmClosed-door nuclear meetings broke the law in Bruce County  The Star.com  7 Aug 14 Closed-door meetings to talk about a proposed nuclear waste site near Kincardine broke the Municipal Act, says an official investigator By:  Business reporter,

Bruce County council violated the Municipal Act by holding a string of closed-door meetings to talk about a proposed nuclear waste site near Kincardine, an official investigator says……… it’s not certain what was said in the sessions held from 2009 to 2012, because no official minutes were taken.

Unofficial notes were taken at eight sessions, but there appears to be no record for as many as nine others.

Nor was public notice given that the meetings were being held.

The investigator’s report was commissioned by the county after a complaint by citizens’ groups.

The complaint arose over meetings of a body called the Community Consultation Advisory Group. It was made up of all the mayors in Bruce County, including the county warden.

The group was formed by Ontario Power Generation to talk about OPG’s plans for a low- and intermediate-level nuclear waste site near Kincardine.

The Nuclear Waste Management Organization — which is seeking a place to bury high-level nuclear waste — was also part of the sessions. Some were attended by members of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

Because the group included every mayor in Bruce County, Amberley Gavel said there was in effect a quorum of county council members at every meeting of the advisory group.

And since the nuclear waste issue had been a subject discussed at county council, the advisory group sessions were in effect council meetings, the report concludes.

The Municipal Act generally requires council meetings to be public. None of the permitted exceptions applied in this case. “Since there was no notice of these Council meetings given to the public in accordance with the County’s Procedure By-Law; no Clerk or designate was present to take minutes, nor were any taken; and the public was unaware of and in no case attended any of these meetings; nor was there any resolution to close them, they were clearly in contravention of the open meetings requirements of the Act,” the report concludes………

Former Brockton mayor Charlie Bagnato said he didn’t fully realize the meetings were closed to the public when he attended the sessions.

“When you get elected, you get a list of all the different committees there and you appoint people to different committees,” he said. “The thing was driven by OPG. I guess we just kind of kowtowed to whatever they had done in the past.”

But some residents of the area have said the closed meetings show the current process of choosing a nuclear waste is fatally flawed.

The task of evaluating the location of the proposed low- and intermediate-level waste site is in now in the hands of a federal panel.

Rod McLeod, a lawyer and former president of the Southampton Residents Association, argued in a submission to the panel when the secret meetings first came to light that the panel should ultimately abort its current process.

Both the nuclear regulators and the municipalities showed that they aren’t willing to participate fairly and transparently, he argued. http://www.thestar.com/business/2014/08/07/closeddoor_nuclear_meetings_broke_the_law_in_bruce_county.html

August 8, 2014 Posted by | Canada, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

China to get “zombie” Canadian nuclear reprocessing, from SNC Lavalin

SNC-Lavalin seeks to expand nuclear enterprise in China  SHAWN MCCARTHY – GLOBAL ENERGY REPORTEROTTAWA — 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……..

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.”

July 21, 2014 Posted by | business and costs, Canada, China | Leave a comment

Canada’s nuclear watchdog recommends iodine pills for communities near nuclear reactors

Nuclear watchdog recommends distributing iodine pills to residents near reactors  Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission is proposing that those within 10 kilometres of reactor sites — about a quarter-million people in the GTA — be given thyroid blocking pills as a precaution.The Star,  By: Jennifer Ditchburn The Canadian Press,  Jun 23 2014

OTTAWA—Canada’s nuclear watchdog is proposing for the first time that people living near reactors be given a precautionary stock of radiation-fighting pills in case of an accident.

But at a consultation meeting Monday in Ottawa, sources in the room said the nuclear power producers expressed reservations about the plan, and how it would be implemented.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has been reviewing the country’s emergency preparedness and response regulations in the wake of the meltdown at Japan’s Fukushima reactor in 2011. Many countries have already adopted a system whereby residents near nuclear reactors are given iodine thyroid-blocking tablets to store in their homes.

The thyroid glands, especially in younger children, are the most susceptible to absorbing radiation that is ingested or inhaled. The pills are supposed to be taken immediately before or after a major radiation leak.

Mass distribution has occurred in New Brunswick and in Quebec, but not in Ontario, where the major reactors are located. Pills are available to residents at local pharmacies and stockpiled at schools.

A 2013 focus group conducted for Ontario Power Generation said that among residents surveyed around the Darlington and Pickering nuclear plants, “almost none had obtained free pills that have been advertised in regional communications or pamphlets.”

The safety commission has been consulting with various groups, including environmentalists and nuclear licence holders, on its latest regulatory drafts.

It is proposing the tablets be pre-distributed within the “plume” area of radiation — about 10 kilometres — for a selective portion of the population. In the Greater Toronto Area, that means about a quarter-million people……..

Groups such as Greenpeace and the Canadian Environmental Law Association are supportive of the commission’s work — a somewhat rare occurrence.

“This is a good step towards catching up with other countries, Canadians deserve protection on par with international best practices,” said Shawn-Patrick Stensil, a nuclear analyst with Greenpeace. “The way it’s written right now, it doesn’t meet international best practices, but it’s a good step towards that.”

The groups emphasize that leaving it up to people to pick up pills on their own has obviously not worked, and in the aftermath and chaos of a nuclear accident and evacuation, people might not have the ability to get the pills in time.

“Our response is that we’ve had 30-plus years of making the pills available … for people to pick up at pharmacies, and there’s very low awareness by people that they should do so and that it matters to their health,” said Theresa McClenaghan, executive director and counsel of the Canadian Environmental Law Association.

“Instead, the messaging that people have had is that the plants are safe and there’s nothing to worry about.” http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2014/06/23/nuclear_watchdog_wants_iodine_pill_stockpiles_near_reactors.html

June 24, 2014 Posted by | Canada, health | Leave a comment

$1billion Liability Limit for Canada’s Nuclear Industry

scrutiny-on-costsflag-canadaCanadian Nuclear Industry Accepts $1 Billion Liability Limit OTTAWA, June 5, 2014 /CNW/ – The Canadian nuclear industry told a parliamentary committee today that it accepts a proposed $1 billion liability limit for nuclear accidents.

“The $1 billion limit balances the nuclear industry’s operational needs and the public’s need for an effective liability regime,” Dr. John Barrett, the President and CEO of the Canadian Nuclear Association, told the Commons Standing Committee on Natural Resources.

The $1 billion limit would take effect if Bill C-22, the proposed Energy Safety and Security Act, becomes law. The bill would replace the 1976 Nuclear Liability Act (NLA) with a Nuclear Liability and Compensation Act, and ratify an international treaty providing additional coverage for foreign damage caused by Canadian nuclear operators…

…..  the bill’s treaty provisions would enable industry members to operate in other countries, and increase the industry’s economic contributions to Canada…… f Parliament passes Bill C-22, the nuclear industry would encourage the government to increase the number of insurance companies eligible to provide nuclear liability insurance.

Bill C-22 would allow nuclear operators to provide insurance alternatives for up to 50 per cent of their liability. http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1368049/canadian-nuclear-industry-accepts-1-billion-liability-limit

June 6, 2014 Posted by | business and costs, Canada, politics | Leave a comment

Canada’s nuclear regulator allows Pickering nuclear reactors to operate past their design limit

safety-symbol1flag-canadaPickering nuclear reactors can exceed design operating limit Canada’s nuclear regulator will allow reactors at the Pickering nuclear station to operate past their design limit. The Star, By:  Business reporter, Published on Tue Jun 03 2014 Canada’s nuclear regulator says reactors at the Pickering power station will be allowed to operate beyond their stated design limit.

But the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has ordered Ontario Power Generation to present further detailed information about the station at a meeting in August.

One of the six active reactors at Pickering would have had to shut down later this month had the commission not made its decision, released Tuesday. Others are also nearing their limit.

The pressure tubes in the reactors – which hold the uranium fuel – have a design life of operating for 210,000 “equivalent full power hours.” OPG is not allowed to operate them past that limit.

OPG has asked the nuclear safety commission to extend the operating limit to 247,000 hours. The company wants to extend Pickering’s life to about 2020, but wants to do so without performing the expensive and lengthy task of replacing all the pressure tubes in the reactors……….

Environmental groups that had appeared before the commission had argued that the limit shouldn’t be exceeded because OPG’s emergency plans for a serious nuclear accident and a wide-spread release of radiation are inadequate.

“The fact they’re asking OPG to do this additional work for August is pretty significant,” said Theresa McCleneghan of the Canadian Environmental Law Association…….

Shawn-Patrick Stensil of Greenpeace said it’s “irresponsible” to still be running the Pickering plant.

People living near the plant don’t know enough about emergency plans in the event of an accident, he said.

He said the commission’s decision to extend the hours of operation is “kicking the can down the road.”

The province doesn’t need the output of the reactor that was about to hit the 210,000-hour limit Stensil said.

In fact, he noted that even with the warm weather on Tuesday, Ontario was exporting 2,000 megawatts of power – or the equivalent of about four Pickering reactors.

“We could be reducing risk much more tangibly just by shutting down reactors that we don’t need,” he said. http://www.thestar.com/business/economy/2014/06/03/pickering_nuclear_reactors_can_exceed_design_operating_limit.html

June 4, 2014 Posted by | Canada, safety | Leave a comment

Canada’s nuclear industry plans propaganda campaign, especially in schools

flag-canadaCanada’s uncertain nuclear future article is based on Canada’s Nuclear Energy Sector: Where to from here? published by Canada’s Public Policy Forum. 2 June 2014“……One approach to address the concerns of the anti-nuclear movement is to work with environmental NGO leaders, to foster trust and a less-polarised dialogue. Such dialogues will be difficult and will take time: workshop participants said this approach was successful in the forestry sector, but it required much time and effort over two decades. To gain social license and broader acceptance, groups outside the sector will need to initiate the discussions. The start of this dialogue can be seen in the US, with recent efforts by some prominent environmental NGO leaders, who had once been opposed to nuclear.

The often passionate public reaction against nuclear power is a significant challenge. Extensive media coverage of the Fukushima Daiichi disaster in Japan, bad memories of Chernobyl and Three Mile Island, and common misunderstandings around radiation mean the public is often reluctant to embrace nuclear power plant construction or to view nuclear as a viable energy source. A key to success in both the UK and France has been including information about nuclear energy in school curriculums.

nuclear-teacher

By educating students about nuclear energy, both countries have been successful in helping to dispel myths around safety and security that persist elsewhere. These countries have shown that education could be a useful first step to engaging citizens in a more enlightened discussion on nuclear energy. Given the diverse energy sources in Canada, school boards would be wise to develop science programmes that explore all types of energy and allow students to be exposed to and learn about the positive and negative aspects of all of them.

June 3, 2014 Posted by | Canada, marketing | 1 Comment

Settlement reached between Vancouver Province and uranium company

justiceflag-canadaVancouver’s Boss Power closes on $30-million settlement with province over uranium ban By Tyler Orton http://www.biv.com/article/20140602/BIV0108/140609993/vancouvers-boss-power-closes-on-30-million-settlement-with-province Mon Jun 2, 2014  A Vancouver-based resource company has closed on a $30-million settlement with the B.C. government, officially putting to bed a nearly six-year-old lawsuit.

The province imposed a halt on all uranium exploration and development in April 2008. Boss Power Corp. (TSX.V: BPU) filed suit later in the year claiming the B.C. government expropriated the company’s interest in its Blizzard uranium property near Kelowna when it imposed a “no registration reserve” under the Mineral Tenure Act.

The reserve allowed the government to ensure no future claims included the rights to uranium, however, Boss Power argued the property was registered before this ban went into effect.

Boss Power and Victoria settled for $30 million in 2011 before the case went to court.

The final amended settlement will divide the settlement up between other parties with interests in the property.

About 80% of the settlement will be held in a trust until Boss Power is reorganized into two different corporations, an arrangement expected to be approved in August.

June 2, 2014 Posted by | Canada, Legal | Leave a comment

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