Archive for July, 2012
News Release – Town of Manitouwadge
A delegation from Manitouwadge visited the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station on July 26 where
they saw firsthand how used nuclear fuel is safely stored on an interim basis. Representatives from
the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) also briefed them on Canada’s plan for
managing used fuel on a long-term basis. The plan, approved by the Government of Canada in
2007, is called Adaptive Phased Management (APM), and it features construction of a deep
geological repository for safely and securely isolating used nuclear fuel from humans and the
environment on an indefinite basis.
Manitouwadge Delegation NWMO Tour? What They Will See & Do – Learning About Nuclear Energy
Written by admin on 27 July 2012 – http://www.OntarioNewsNorth.com
The Government of Canada selected Canada’s plan for the long-term management of used nuclear fuel in June 2007. The approach, called Adaptive Phased Management, involves the development of a large infrastructure project in an informed and willing host community. The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) is federally mandated to implement this project and is beginning the multi-year process for selecting an informed and willing community to host this national facility.
The NWMO is providing an opportunity for interested communities to learn more about Canada’s plan for the long-term management of used nuclear fuel, the activities of the NWMO, and the process it will use to select an informed and willing community to host this project. It is VERY IMPORTANT for people to note that communities that express interest in learning more are NOT obliged to participate in the site selection process. The site ultimately selected for the project must meet a robust set of technical safety requirements.
Manitouwadge Town Council passed a motion to participate in the “Learn More” process for a variety of reasons, not the least among them, the fact that several neighbouring communities are in this process, and so for a plethera of reasons it makes good sense to be educated regarding what it is those communities may be considering in regards to the potential deep geological repository.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
by John Divinski, Bayshore Broadcasting
About 100 people showed up for what was being called the No Nuke Dump Summer School at the Southampton Town Hall. Put on Monday night by the Save Our Saugeen Shores group, the event was to discuss the process of possibly bringing a high level nuclear waste Deep Geological Repository to the municipality.
A film was also shown on the continuing development of a DGR in Finland that asked many questions, but found few answers from those developing the site. After the movie, those attending were invited to ask their questions or make comments. Ulrich Pieplow of Paisley, originally from Germany, says there are several DGR sites in his country and in less than 50 -years, there are issues about leakage around a low and intermediate waste DGR.
Pieplow says it should be a warning to local officials that there are issues and the longevity of safe storage is not something that can be taken for granted. He says, Germany is having problems after 50-years and the DGR proposed for high level waste needs to be safe for 100,000 years. Pieplow says locating such a facility near the largest fresh -water body in the world, particularly with so little information on the concept is not a wise decision.
Grace says her argument remains the same —that the public has not been welcomed into the process. She says if the process was open and the DGR still ended up in Saugeen Shores then at least those who are opposed would have had their say. Grace says that appears not to be happening.
Saugeen Shores Councillor Taun Frosst was the only town council member to show up at the meeting. Frosst says he was interested in seeing the movie but didn’t think it shed any further light on the issue. He says there are questions out there and both sides need to talk and get answers rather than fighting each other.
Frosst still maintains though, town council is doing the right thing. He says they’re looking for information like the surrounding municipalities are doing. He says it would be wrong to bury their heads in the sand on the matter.
But Nuclear Waste Community Advisory Committee chair assures still early in process
By Shirley Mills, Sault Star
July 19, 2012
In the months since the Nuclear Waste Community Advisory Committee first formed, it has been involved in looking at how the community would be affected should a deep geological repository be deemed feasible for Wawa, north of Sault Ste. Marie.
CAC chair Dave Jennings said he hasn’t seen much interest from the community in the committee’s activities, adding it’s still early in the process.
“I am looking forward to the positives and negatives, then to move forward to make a decision,” he said.
“We would be selling ourselves short if we don’t look at this opportunity.”
Two key issues to be addressed in the feasibility studies are safety, security and protection of people and the environment, as well as the long-term, well-being of the community, not only Wawa but its surrounding area.
Pic Mobert First Nation has expressed its opposition to the host site selection.
The Netamisakomik People of Mobert First Nation say they are “resolute” that no nuclear waste site be located within traditional territory, contending they must be consulted and involved in discussions pertaining to potential nuclear waste facilities in communities, from Wawa to Schreiber, specifically White River, Manitouwadge and Hornepayne.
PMFN also says despite NWMO’s indication in its 2011 annual report that First Nations in the vicinity of communities showing an interest in the citing process would be consulted, no communication has been received, although White River, Wawa, Manitouwadge and Hornepayne, are being studied for potential of the project.
But Ray Hatfield, senior adviser aboriginal community relations, told the Community Advisory Committee he has been “actively engaged” in meeting with First Nations communities that make up the Northeast Superior Regional Chiefs Forum.
Resident and former mayor Howard Whent presented the CAC with 23 pages of written enquiries relating to costs, time lines and related matters. Communication such as this fits the CAC’s mandate to engage, educate and listen to the community, gather technical and social research andprovide advice to council regarding the site selection process.
“This is one of the reasons why we’re here,” Jennings said.
There are now 20 communities showing interest in NWMO’s proposal for storing used nuclear fuel, with 15 actively engaged in the site selection process. There is a formal cutoff date of Sept. 30 for communities showing interest.
This could mean billions of dollars over the life of the project yielding up to 800 jobs for the 10-year construction phase and 300 to 400 jobs for hundreds of years for the area selected.
Current storage facilities in generating stations in Pickering, Darlington, and Bruce, have decades of remaining life expectancy, so an operational starting point is still more than 20 years away, 2035 at the earliest.
The NWMO has a presence in Wawa, with regular published reports for information on the site selection process and Adaptive Phase Management. It has opened an office at 3 Maple St., in Wawa.
July 17, 2012
‘Caution tape’ needed, Northwatch says
By: Heidi Ulrichsen – Sudbury Northern Life Staff
When the Municipality of Wawa first decided to explore the possibility of hosting the country’s nuclear waste, a group of citizens had what Mayor Linda Nowicki calls an “immediate knee-jerk response.”
“I think they had an 800-signature petition,” she said. “But a lot of the signatures were from people out of town and from children. It wasn’t really an appropriate petition, but we’re taking it into consideration.”
Wawa, located about seven hours away from Greater Sudbury, on the shores of Lake Superior, is one of several communities being courted by the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) as a potential site for its project deep beneath the earth.
In 2010, the NWMO began searching for a community where it can build what’s known as a “deep geological repository,”
where nuclear waste can be buried deep beneath the ground.
The organization only works with communities interested in potentially hosting the facility ” it doesn’t approach any communities itself. The process to find a suitable project site is expected to take about eight years.
The NWMO is planning to suspend the expressions of interest phase of the project on Sept. 30 of this year, meaning new communities would no longer be eligible to participate in the project.
Wawa isn’t the only northern Ontario community which has expressed interest.
Elliot Lake, Blind River, Spanish and the North Shore, along with Nipigon and White River in northwestern Ontario, are at step two of the site selection process, meaning they’re learning more and undergoing initial screenings.
Saugeen Shores, Brockton, Huron-Kinloss and South Bruce are also at step two.
Wawa is one step ahead – at step three – of the site selection process, meaning it’s undergoing preliminary assessments.
Ear Falls, Ignace, Schreiber and Hornepayne in northwestern Ontario, along with English River First Nation, Pinehouse and Creighton in Saskatchewan, are also at this step.
The potential environmental concerns associated with the project don’t phase Nowicki.
“For the long term, the way they plan to store it, it would supposedly withstand the next ice age,” she said.
In terms of the transportation of the material, Nowicki said she’s satisfied the containers are robust and there’s very little chance of environmental contamination.
The idea to sign up the North Shore region communities for the NWMO process originally came from the area’s economic development agency, according to Brent St. Denis, CAO of the Town of Spanish.
While Nowicki and St. Denis seem comfortable with the idea of a nuclear waste repository – at least at this early stage – Brennain Lloyd’s concerns are many and varied.
Last month, the project co-ordinator for Northwatch, a northern Ontario organization focusing on environmental activism, hosted sessions in some of the communities which have expressed interest in the NWMO process.
Lloyd said the sessions covered a lot of the “basics” related to what the nuclear waste is and why their community is being asked to consider hosting a nuclear waste repository.
“I think people have appreciated having the context for the discussion,” she said.
Lloyd said Northwatch plans to hold more detailed sessions on the subject in the involved communities starting this fall.
In general, Northwatch doesn’t support deep geological repositories because it doesn’t think a compelling technical and safety case has been made for the idea, despite studies which go back to the late 1970s.
“The NWMO is saying we’re good enough to go, and we’ll solve the problems by the time we get there,” Lloyd said.
“Northwatch’s view is you’ve been at this for decades, and there’s still large uncertainties about what we would consider to be basic criteria for a waste containment system.”
She’d rather see the country’s nuclear waste stay right where it is right now, although she concedes that’s not a perfect solution either.
The lifespan of the containers used to store the fuel needs to be increased, and better security is needed to ensure it’s safe from threats such as terrorist attacks, Lloyd said.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012 11:30:06 EDT AM
The recent letter submitted by Saugeen Shores council cheerleaders, was in pursuit of Canada�s highly radioactive nuclear waste dump. As champions of the Nuclear Dump, as supporters of a biased process, and as the community voice of those who are willing to sell the current vision of Saugeen Shores to the highest bidder, they have reached a new low.
While hiding their commitment to the world�s largest nuclear dump under the guise of a search for more information they attack members of the community who have the courage to challenge this bias process. Reactive leaders attack symptoms: signs and acts of protest, and ignore the lack of leadership, from a council that has stopped listening to their constituents.
Council, is using the Nuclear Waste Management Organization�s manual in their lack of response to Chief Kahgee, the Chief of Saugeen First Nation�s objection to this process.
Local residents in opposition are now being victimized, accused of being: book burners, promoters of horror films, part-time or new residents with no rights, radical and uninformed and finally this week, cheaters who are misleading others.
The Southampton Residents Association has 700 members who represent a cross section of this community who have chosen to champion the vision of Saugeen Shores as one of the few special places like this left in the world.
The Southampton Residents Association has a solid record of positive community leadership including support for community projects like: the historic lighting on High Street, the Jubilee Assessable Park and the Southampton Memorial Hospital Auxiliary.
The SRA supports Nuclear Energy; we recognize the importance of Bruce Power and OPG in the production of clean, cost effective energy for the province as well and the positive economic impact on our community.
It makes no sense, to locate the largest nuclear waste dump in the world, here on the shores of Lake Huron. The research is clear, the stigma attached to a nuclear dump reduces property values, has a negative impact on tourism, and will deter future retirees to Saugeen Shores.
There are no new jobs during the 15 years of process, the community will face years of indecision and conflict, followed by 20 years of a boom bust cycle of 500 construction jobs, followed by 400 operational jobs and then eventually 100 permanent jobs.
We do not have a conflict of interest, we are not acting in self interest, we are involved because we care about the future of Saugeen Shores. We are being attacked by people with self interest, employees and retirees from Bruce Power and people who have family working in nuclear waste management.
We are not radical, tree hugging, anti-nuclear protestors; we are friends, neighbours, and caring residents who have the courage to endure the insults. Why, because we believe Council�s decisions could bring all of Canada�s highly radioactive spent nuclear fuel to Saugeen Shores. We do not want our community to be branded as,� Canada�s National Nuclear Dumpsite.�
Southampton Residents Association
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Eighteen communities, including 15 in Ontario, are vying to become Canada�s nuclear waste capital
By DAVID MCLAREN, SPECIAL TO QMI AGENCY
Last Updated: June 16, 2012 12:00am
At the beginning of everything, the Navajo were shown two yellow powders. One they could use – it was maize pollen. The other they were told to leave in the ground. That was oxidized uranium.
No one talks of “clean” nuclear energy anymore, not when you consider the whole fuel cycle.
Early mining in the Northwest Territories rendered Deline a “village of widows” because of the high mortality rate of Dene men who worked, unwarned and unprotected, in the uranium mines.
The same thing happened to Navajo in the U.S. southwest. Their ancient lands have been devastated by uranium mines, turning their creation story into apocalyptic prophecy.
Contamination during the operation of a nuclear plant is a constant concern. And the spent fuel from the core of a nuclear reactor is high-level nuclear waste. It takes a million years (give or take a few millennia) before it’s safe to stand beside.
So, why are four municipalities in southwestern Ontario vying to become the nuclear waste capital of Canada?
Fourteen other communities – 11 in northern Ontario and three in Saskatchewan – are also in the running. But Brockton (Walkerton), Saugeen Shores, Huron-Kinloss and Central Huron are all within a four-hour drive from London, Kitchener-Waterloo, Hamilton and Toronto.
All four communities bill themselves as tourist destinations, none more so than Saugeen Shores along Lake Huron…