Canada wants relaxation in India’s nuclear liabilities rules THE HINDU, 1 Dec 13 Unless the provisions regarding a plant operators’ liabilities in case of nuclear damages are relaxed, foreign companies 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…… http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/canada-wants-relaxation-in-indias-nuclear-liabilities-rules/article5410644.ece
Nuclear 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 energy 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…… http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/industry-news/energy-and-resources/nuclear-faces-long-road-as-ontario-maps-its-energy-future/article15595098/
AUDIO: Saskatchewan’s Nuclear Addiction Contaminates Both Politics and the People http://www.globalresearch.ca/saskatchewans-nuclear-addiction-contaminates-both-politics-and-the-people/5355042?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=saskatchewans-nuclear-addiction-contaminates-both-politics-and-the-peopleGlobal 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.
Saskatoon is also the headquarters of Areva Resources Canada Inc, a uranium mining, milling, and exploration company.
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………
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
“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….. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-liberals-flying-blind-on-nuclear-reactor-file-ndp-says-1.2187519
Ontario 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 industry, 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……..http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ontario-backs-away-from-plans-to-buy-new-nuclear-reactors/article14793803/
Report 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. CTVNews.ca 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.” http://canadaam.ctvnews.ca/report-raises-fresh-concerns-about-radiation-levels-in-japanese-fish-1.1486514#ixzz2hAEyiUbR
U.S. officials demand Ontario clarify plan for nuclear waste http://www.macombdaily.com/environment-and-nature/20131003/us-officials-demand-ontario-clarify-plan-for-nuclear-waste By Gina Joseph, The Macomb Daily 10/03/13, Plans by Ontario Power Generation to bury its low- and intermediate-level nuclear waste underground may be a Trojan horse.
On Monday, state Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood, D-Taylor, and state Rep. Sarah Roberts, D-Taylor, traveled to a public hearing in Ontario to voice their concerns before a Joint Review Panel on the matter of the Deep Geologic Repository (DGR) on the shore of Lake Huron. Today, Hopgood and Roberts joined other prominent officials in submitting a formal written Request for Ruling regarding the plan, which appears to have a much larger scope than what is detailed in the project report.
In the request, the signatories demanded a suspension of the hearings if the Joint Review Panel and OPG cannot confirm that all highly radioactive wastes are prohibited in this or any future repository on the site. The facility would be located under the Bruce Nuclear Power Plant and about 440 yards below the Great Lakes basin.
“As if the proposal of this radioactive waste repository less than a mile from the shores of Lake Huron wasn’t threatening enough, it is now becoming clear that those fears are just the beginning,” said Sen. Hopgood. “With the hearings underway, information is coming out regarding the actual scope of the project and the potential to include highly radioactive wastes. This isn’t just for the mops and rags that OPG often speaks of, and could include everything short of spent nuclear fuel. If that is the intent, it is absolutely essential that we go back to the drawing board or, better yet, scrap the idea altogether.” Roberts concurred.
“The merits of this debate must be founded on the assumption that we have all of the correct information regarding this (DGR),” said Rep. Roberts. “Otherwise, the potential for negative impacts on our Great Lakes could be far worse than we ever imagined.”
Roberts and Hopgood attended day 12 of the hearings to be held through Oct. 12.
Cameco, Sierra Club face off over uranium licences for Saskatchewan mines THE STAR PHOENIX THE CANADIAN PRESS SEPTEMBER 30, 2013 SASKATOON – An environmental group is raising pollution concerns about Cameco’s uranium mining in northern Saskatchewan to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.
But Cameco says the Sierra Club’s allegations that it massively exceeded regulatory limits are false.
The commission will hear from both sides as public hearings start Tuesday on Cameco’s application to renew its mine and mill licences for its Key Lake, McArthur River and Rabbit Lake facilities.
“The most disturbing thing we discovered in the process of preparing the submission were huge, very huge numbers, in terms of pollution that’s coming from the plant and getting into the environment,” John Bennett, executive director of Sierra Club Canada, said Monday.
“Every kind of pollutant that comes out of them, their numbers are way over the limits and no one’s been enforcing it.”
The Sierra Club says that as of 2010, water releases from the Deilmann tailings facility in cadmium exceed the Saskatchewan standard by 5,782 per cent.
It says the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment allows Cameco to release water from tailings ponds directly into the environment at Horsefly Lake.
The organization also says at the McArthur River site, concentrations of arsenic, selenium, and uranium in water effluent have exceeded the standards by 54 per cent for arsenic, 700 per cent for selenium and 1,230 per cent for uranium. It says blueberries and fish are contaminated with uranium.
The Sierra Club says the pollution is increasing the risk to human health and local eco-systems.
“We think that before any kind of change, any kind of renewal of the licence, there needs to be an environmental impact study — which there hasn’t been yet,” Bennett said in an interview from Ottawa……..
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission hearings, which are being held in La Ronge, will last three days and will be webcast on nuclearsafety.gc.ca. http://www.thestarphoenix.com/business/Cameco+Sierra+Club+face+over+uranium+licences+Saskatchewan/8978684/story.html
CRA says Saskatchewan uranium giant Cameco has avoided paying hundreds of millions in Canadian taxes by offshoring profits in Switzerland http://business.financialpost.com/2013/09/25/cameco-cra-tax/ John Greenwood | 25/09/13 The Canada Revenue Agency says Saskatchewan-based Cameco Corp. hasn’t been paying its taxes and it wants the money. Now Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall has joined the fray, calling for Cameco, the world’s largest publicly traded uranium producer, to pay up.
Speaking to reporters this week, Mr. Wall said part of the tax revenue that Ottawa collects ends up going back to the provinces, so when the CRA says it’s not getting what it believes it should, “that’s a concern to [Saskatchewan] as well, and it should be. It doesn’t matter who the company is, or the individual. We should pay taxes that are due.”
At issue is Cameco’s alleged practice of shifting profits to a Switzerland subsidiary where taxes are lower. And while the Cameco case has been going on for several years and though the CRA won the most recent round, the ruling is being appealed and observers say it is unclear who will come out on top.
“The CRA has had a lot of trouble proving some of these cases in court,” said Dennis Howlett, executive director of Canadians for Tax Fairness.
Observers say the practice of transfer pricing as a way to lower tax rates is widespread across corporate Canada, engaged in by many of the biggest and best known players across a swath of industries.
Securing approval for nuclear waste site won’t be ‘quick or easy process’: First Nations “If things go south in a hurry, where do our people go? We do not have the luxury of picking up and leaving.” The Star, By: John Spears Business reporter, on Mon Sep 16 2013 KINCARDINE—First Nations communities near Ontario Power Generation’s proposed nuclear waste disposal facility won’t be rushed into supporting the project, a federal hearing has been told. Read more »
The university administration is complicit, the faculty and staff are largely acquiescent, and the vast majority of students appear to be oblivious to the dangers of encroaching corporate influence. It has been left to a few faculty and students and a minority of university senators to raise the alarm about the murky undercurrents.
In light of these alarming trends, it is essential that opposition to the university’s role in nuclear development extend to the wider community.
“……….A gentle wooing The readiness with which the university administration and faculty accepted the establishment of the CCNI comes as no surprise. One might conclude, after reading to this point, that there is an aura of inevitability about it. But in fact, the foundations for university support have been carefully built over several years.
The uranium industry, and particularly Cameco – its chief manifestation here in Saskatchewan – have assiduously wooed the University of Saskatchewan and given millions of dollars in endowments to chairs, scholarships, and infrastructure over the past two decades. Cameco Plaza, next to the Administration Building, and Cameco Skywalk at Royal University Hospital, are among the most visible physical signs of this corporate impact.
Several of the faculty, directors, and department heads who wrote glowing letters of support for the establishment of CCNI have at one time or another seen their programs benefit from Cameco’s largesse. Read more »
Follow the yellowcake road Nuclear power, tarsands extraction, and the co-option of the University of Saskatchewan Briar Patch magazine, BY D’ARCY HANDE • FEB 28, 2012 In 2011 the University of Saskatchewan went truly nuclear, realizing, in many respects, the loftiest ambitions of the uranium industry and its supporters within the provincial government and the university. On October 14, 2011, the University of Saskatchewan board of governors formally approved the incorporation of the Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation (CCNI) “to stimulate new research, development and training in advanced aspects of nuclear science and technology.”
Although the pieces seemed to come together in just a few short months, the game plan had been coalescing since Brad Wall’s Saskatchewan Party government was first elected in 2007 (read the full timeline here). Tracing corporate connections and developments behind the scenes shows how a coordinated strategy can be implemented largely outside public purview and beyond generally accepted public accountability…… Read more »
Canadian University Scientist: Test seafood for Fukushima contamination — Continuous inputs for 2 years and counting will lead to ample opportunity for re-concentrating up food chain — Simply not enough being done on this side of Pacific http://enenews.com/canadian-university-scientist-continuous-input-of-fukushima-contamination-for-two-years-and-counting-will-lead-to-ample-opportunity-for-re-concentrating-up-food-chain-simply-not-enough-tests-being
Title: Nuclear meltdown’s effect on B.C. fish unclear
Source: Times Colonist
Author: Judith Lavoie
Date: August 21, 2013
[...] Nikolaus Gantner, an ecotoxicologist affiliated with Trent University in Peterborough, Ont., said the challenge is to discover how much radiation is accumulating in migratory or long-lived fish, such as halibut, salmon and tuna.
“There are simply not enough measurements being done in water and biota on this side of the Pacific Ocean,” he said.
“Continuous input to water for two years — and counting — will lead to ample opportunity for re-concentrating … up the food chain.”
[...] Gantner would like testing extended to seafood eaten frequently by First Nations, such as oysters and crab.
Gantner doubts whether studies will find dangerous levels of radiation in fish, and said he has no hesitation in eating fish from the Pacific. [...]
Daniel Guerin warned in his 1936 book Fascism and Big Business warned to be vigilant against ”an informal and changing coalition of groups with vested psychological, moral, and material interests in the continuous development and maintenance of high levels of weaponry, in preservation of colonial markets and in military-strategic conceptions of internal affairs.”
President Eisenhower updated this message with a similar warning to fear the rise of the “military-industrial complex.” Edward Snowden has updated the message that Americans must fear the rise of the “military-intelligence complex.”
Snowden Warns Americans: Fear The Military-Intelligence Complex The Testosterone Pit, By Chriss Street 2 Aug 13, : “….. the latest
depressing revelations about the rise of the military-industrial complex from whistleblower/traitor Edward Snowden as he accepted political asylum in Russia today.
Snowden’s latest bombshell is the outing of the NSA’s XKeyscore software that is vacuuming up “nearly everything a typical user does on the internet.” The top secret program allows civilian contractors in the U.S. to troll vast databases containing emails, online chats
and the browsing histories of millions of individuals around the world. The NSA boasts in training materials that XKeyscore is its “widest-reaching” system for developing intelligence from the internet.
Snowden was already the “most wanted person on earth”, but after today’s disclosures, he must be on the Obama Administration’s secret double most wanted man in the universe list. With his newly-awarded legal status in Russia, Snowden cannot be legally handed over orkidnapped by the CIA. Snowden remains a very “marked man” and will need to stay in the public eye to avoid accidentally beingassassinated in some lonely hideout. Consequently, I believe that he will continue to talk to the international press………… Read more »
Cameco lowers uranium sales projections STARPHOENIX BY CHRISTOPHER DONVILLE, POSTMEDIA NEWS AUGUST 2, 2013 Cameco Corp., the world’s third-largest uranium producer, will sell less of the nuclear fuel via its German trading unit than previously planned because of the decline in the price of the commodity.
Sales volumes will be 8 million to 10 million pounds, down from an earlier projection of 9 million to 11 million, the Canadian company said Thursday in a statement. It now sees the unit’s 2013 sales at $450 million to $550 million, from $500 million to $600 million previously……..Uranium spot prices have fallen 27 per cent in the past year amid delays in resuming electricity output from nuclear power plants in Japan following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.http://www.thestarphoenix.com/business/Cameco+lowers+uranium+sales+projections/8740104/story.html
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