Sask. Party decided on nuclear power: NDP
James Wood, The StarPhoenix
Published: Friday, November 28, 2008
REGINA -- Bruce Power's pitch for a potential nuclear power plant in the province has found a receptive audience -- at the least -- in the Saskatchewan Party government, say some observers.
On Thursday, the Ontario-based private nuclear operator released in Saskatoon a feasibility study that sees nuclear power playing a role in Saskatchewan in 2020.
"I think there's a lot of desire in the part of the current government to proceed down that way," said Ken Rasmussen of the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy.
"It's something big, it's something bold, it's something that will fundamentally alter the nature of politics in this province in a pretty fundamental way."
Rasmussen said the roots of Sask. Party interest in nuclear power likely stem from a view that it will spur economic development by boosting the province's uranium industry and potentially leading to power exports.
But as a type of energy that does not emit greenhouse-gas emissions, it is also seen increasingly as a solution to Saskatchewan's woeful climate change record.
That connection to the climate change issue has also seemingly translated into increased public support for the nuclear concept, which past governments were lacking, said Rasmussen.
But the NDP said the government has crossed the line by taking an active role in the sales pitch to the public.
Opposition Leader Lorne Calvert said the government is clearly following a strategy to normalize the concept and smooth the way for nuclear power in Saskatchewan.
That's included Premier Brad Wall's increasing portrayal of the Sask. Party's campaign promise to explore "value-added opportunities" for uranium as a mandate for nuclear power in the province, the appointment of a nuclear industry-heavy panel to explore the development of uranium resources and a private member's motion by Meadow Lake MLA Jeremy Harrison for the legislature to consider value-added opportunities, including nuclear power generation.
Also potentially connected is Wall's recent musings about streamlining federal environmental rules where they overlap with provincial regulations, which could affect the nuclear approval process.
"(They) have a strategy in place to bring us to a decision that is already made. I believe the Sask. Party as the government of the day has taken the position that the province ought to move to the generation of electricity through nuclear power," said Calvert in an interview Thursday.
The former premier said there may be a case for nuclear power in the province but the government is taking the wrong approach.
"If it were a burning desire of mine to see a reactor built, I would want to be absolutely sure that from the very beginning this had deep public consultation so you can build a base of understanding and support because this project . . . if everything was announced tomorrow, we'd still be years away," he said.
Sask. Party Crown Corporations Minister Ken Cheveldayoff said the government has made no secret of its interest in nuclear power, especially given a growing power demand -- estimated at an additional 800 to 2,000 megawatts in the next 12 years.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Sask. Party decided on nuclear power: NDP
An excellent read! Thanks www.energyquest4nanticoke.ca
The Once and Future Kennedy
by: Suzanne Elston
The whole world is watching. Since President-Elect Obama’s victory on November 4th, there has been much debate about how the 44th president of the United States will live up to his many election promises. While his inauguration won’t take place until January 20, 2009, the pundits are already trying to figure out whom Obama will choose to serve in his cabinet.
High among the list of potentials is Robert F. Kennedy Jr. – a seasoned environmental lawyer and advocate who carries the legacy of his uncle, President John Kennedy, and his father, Senator Bobby Kennedy. Despite his remarkable family pedigree and considerable personal accomplishments, it’s Kennedy passion for the health of his children and for the health of this planet that are his greatest strengths.
I had the opportunity to hear Kennedy at the Sustainable Operations Summit in Vancouver a few days before the U.S. election. He challenged the public to question the implied position of the energy industry that economic and environmental policies are mutually exclusive.”The environment and the economy are intertwined,” said Kennedy. “Nature is the infrastructure of our community.
We need to protect this infrastructure, which is the common wealth of our community, so that our children have the same opportunities that we had.”“If we can resolve those issues, then everything else will fall into place,” he said.
“We are not protecting the environment for the sake of the fishes. We are protecting it for us.
The economy is the wholly owned subsidiary of the environment.”Contrary to what the oil industry would have everyone believe, reducing carbon emissions would not kill the already faltering U.S. economy.
Kennedy cited U.S. public opinion during the debate over the abolition of slavery, when 25 percent of the energy used by industry was provided by slave labor.
”Rather than collapsing the US economy, abolition forced the economy to move much more quickly,” said Kennedy. “The fear was that the economy would crater. Instead it exploded exponentially during a period we now call the industrial revolution.
”Kennedy sees the U.S. addiction to carbon fuels as a principle drag on the economy. “We are borrowing a billion dollars a day to feed the addiction to foreign oil from countries that are hostile. We are hemorrhaging our wealth.”
In addition, the U.S. is providing $ 1.5 trillion in subsidies to the oil industry, money that could be much better spent developing local, sustainable energy.
Kennedy cited several examples of nations that have decarbonized their economies with tremendous success. In 1970, Iceland was the poorest country in Europe, importing 100 percent of its energy in the form of coal and oil. The government decided to shift to harvesting local geothermal energy. It took just 15 years to become 4th richest country in Europe (by GDP) with 90 percent of its energy coming from geothermal.
Sweden decided to not only decarbonize, but also to phase out nuclear power in 1996. Harvesting wind, tidal, geothermal and waste energy has made Sweden the 6th richest country in Europe (by GDP) according to Kennedy.Brazil, once a “have not” country, now exports its energy surpluses because it switched from oil to renewable ethanol derived from biomass left over from harvesting sugar cane.
Kennedy dismissed the argument that solar and other renewable power sources can be very harmful to the environment.“The environmental damage caused by building solar farms is a fraction of the damage done every year by coal farming in the Appalachians,” said Kennedy.
The only barrier to creating a sustainable energy economy is subsidies to the incumbents.“We need to create a marketplace where people can sell their energy back to the grid,” said Kennedy.
“We need an economy based on American ingenuity rather than Saudi oil.
”Kennedy pointed to his own experience. Four years ago he was spending $ 2200 a year to fuel his mini-van. Today his Prius costs about $ 1000.“That’s $ 1200 a year in my pocket,” he said. “What would it do to the US economy if everybody had an extra $ 1200 to spend on other things?
Good environmental policy is the same as good economic policy. It creates good jobs and preserves the assets of the community.”
In addition, Kennedy estimates the U.S. could save $ 600 billion a year in avoided costs because of reduced air pollution.
“Am I going to watch my children gasping for air because some lobbyist gave money to the US government?” he said.
“This is not just about the destruction of the environment. This is about the subversion of American society.”Kennedy concluded by citing our moral responsibility to future generations.
“We are part of the continuum, part of something bigger than ourselves. Our environment connects us to the 10,000 generations who were here before laptops,” he said. “We can do well by doing good.”
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Energy generation -- let's stay plugged in
Simcoe Reformer: Toby Barrett - November 26, 2008
When it comes to energy generation and environment, last week's Jarvis symposium proves one thing -- Haldimand and Norfolk residents are plugged in.
A standing-room-only energized crowd of 250 joined a town hall open to all, featuring objective, information-intensive facts from all sides of the energy/environment spectrum. Invitations were sent to stakeholders from all energy and environmental sectors to ensure all views were represented.
Much has changed since the last symposium -- a regulation now to close coal production by 2014, an announcement from Bruce Power to option 1,760 acres from U.S. Steel for two nuclear reactors, natural gas and wind initiatives.
The obvious elephants in the room were coal and nuclear.
Exhibits set up before the speeches featured the Nuclear Waste Management Organization, CAE Alliance, Grand Erie Energy Quest, Canadian Nuclear Workers Association, TCI Renewables, and M2 Fuel Saver and Bruce Power.
Duncan McEachern was first up to discuss Competitive Power Ventures' combined cycle natural gas proposal north of Nanticoke plus wind power plans.
David Shier of the Canadian Nuclear Workers' Council wanted those assembled to understand that, "nuclear power plants are safe," "nuclear power plants produce no greenhouse gases," and "waste is safely managed." Further details can be accessed at www.cnwc-cctn.ca.
Clean and Affordable Energy (CAE) Alliance spokesperson Paul Surreys reminded us, "the Nanticoke plant is economy of scale" -- suggesting the OPG coal plant's emissions should be considered on a per megawatt basis, as one Nanticoke equals four coal plants. He added the "biggest crime" is that government has spent eight years without cleaning coal plants --
www.caealliance.com has more on the "clean coal" story.
OPG Nanticoke's former plant manager, Chris Young, presented information on pilot tests of biomass. The minister of energy has recently directed that a review of the Integrated Power System Plan should "include the potential for converting existing coal fired assets to biomass." The OPG website is at www.opg.com.
Mark Bannister of Diverse Green Solutions -- representing OMNIwatt ( www.omniwatt.com ) -- spoke about the potential for wind, energy from waste, and possibility of green tobacco to make biodiesel.
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture's Ted Cowan provided levity addressing the benefits to struggling farmers from biomass production, adding that "radioactive waste from corn cobs will be gone in 15 minutes." The OFA's information can be found at www.ofa.on.ca.
Richard Goodlet of Port Ryerse filled in as a speaker on carbon sequestration citing there are studies that suggest this area would have potential for injecting coal carbon emissions into underlying geological layers, adding that more funding was needed for research. The website www.energyquest4nanticoke.ca/options.htm has links to carbon sequestration links.
Grant Church of Cayuga made an impassioned plea to "clean up coal plants, and keep them open, as with the rest of the world," stating that because of rising energy prices from other forms of electricity generation "Ontario, once a place to stand and grow, is now a place to run from."
Janet Fraser and Stephana Johnston of Grand Erie Energy Quest concluded the evening indicating, "conservation efforts could eliminate the need for more nuclear plants" and that the energy discussion must continue to ensure the right power versus environment decisions are made for this and future generations. They directed people to www.energyquest4nanticoke.ca.
There's lots to discuss -- let's all stay plugged in.
Toby Barrett is MPP for the riding of Haldimand-Norfolk
Article ID# 1316531
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
I find it interesting that this Specialist that was hired by Bruce Power seems to think that the issue that most people are talking about is radiation. What I have heard is a bit different.
Some of the concerns I have heard are the storage of nuclear waste, water usage and what has come up recently is the mining of uranium. Now that in itself is a whole new ball game! I am working on that one.
What I find interesting is that this specialist states "Nuclear" power is the way to go if you want to minimize our carbon footprint! So what is a "carbon footprint"? I'm not quite sure, but I do think it is more than "radiation" from a nuclear plant!
Nuclear experts hired to answer residents' questions
Posted By MONTE SONNENBERG, SUN MEDIA
November 25, 2008
A radiation specialist will be a key player in a series of open houses related to the proposed construction of two nuclear reactors in Nanticoke.
Bruce Power recently hired Doug Boreham, a former professor at Mc-Master University in Hamilton, as its senior environmental scientist. He will answer questions about nuclear power at upcoming open houses in Simcoe, Jarvis, Port Dover and Cayuga.
"One of the biggest obstacles we have to overcome on these projects are people's fears of radiation," Boreham said Monday. "What is the effect on me? What is the effect on my children? What are the effects on future generations? One of my main functions in this process is to dispel the fears people have about radiation."
Boreham and Duncan Moffett, of Golder Associates, gave Haldimand council an overview Monday of the environmental assessment now underway regarding a possible nuclear installation in Nanticoke. The pair are expected to make the same presentation tonight at Norfolk council.
The open houses scheduled for Dec. 1 to 4 will provide Bruce Power with an opportunity to introduce itself to the community. Experts on nuclear power will be on hand to address residents' questions and concerns.
An issue that has dogged the nuclear industry from the outset is the belief that nuclear waste remains highly toxic for as long as 250,000 years.
That, Boreham said, is not true. After 200 years, he said, a person would have to stand in the presence of a spent fuel rod for one hour to absorb as much radioactivity as is delivered by a standard CT scan.
Boreham and Moffett heard Monday that a plant in Nanticoke may be an issue for Dunnville. The town is down stream from the proposed site and draws its drinking water from Lake Erie.
Nuclear reactors use large amounts of water and discharge trace amounts of radioactive tritium in their effluent. The International Congress on Radiation Protection has set the safe limit for these emissions at 7,500 becquerels.
The amount of tritium released into Lake Huron at Bruce Power's plant in Tiverton averages about 50 becquerels. Moffett said Bruce Power is considering a design for the Nanticoke project that discharges no effluent into Lake Erie.
Moffett added that nuclear power should be the choice of those who wish to minimize their carbon footprint.
"If you were to get all your electricity from one of these reactors, your share of waste over a lifetime would fit in a pop can," he said. "If you got all of your electricity over your lifetime from coal, your waste would fit into four dump trucks."
Moffett said, "Nanticoke looks like one of the best possible sites for a power plant" because it is remote, close to a large body of water and located at the entry point of a major transmission corridor.
The first open house will be held at the Lions Community Centre in Port Dover Dec. 1. The Lions Community Centre in Jarvis is up next Dec. 2. On Dec. 3, the Simcoe Recreation Centre plays host. On Dec. 4, the event moves to the Kinsmen Centre in downtown Cayuga. Each event starts at 3 p. m. and ends at 8 p. m.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
News for Tuesday, November 25th, 2008
Bruce Power runs into opposition
Written by Kevin Bernard and the Canadian Press
It is not going to be smooth sailing for Bruce Power, as the Lake Huron based company tries to expand into Alberta.
The NDP plans to table petitions in the Alberta legislature that bear the names of 25 hundred people opposed to nuclear power in the province.
Opponents of the plant say the government should release a promised report on nuclear power to kick-start public consultations.
The petitions were circulated in northwestern Alberta's Peace Country where Ontario-based Bruce Power is looking at two potential sites for a nuclear reactor.
Bruce Power spokesperson John Peevers, says provincial government and community support is crucial to their plans.
He says they won't proceed with the plant unless they have a willing host, both at the government and community level.
Bruce Power predicts a nuclear plant in the Peace River region would contribute 12 billion dollars to the province's economy during the construction period.
A preliminary report from Bruce Power also shows a nuclear plant would generate 27 hundred long term jobs.
Brenda Brochu, the President of the Peace River Environmental Society, and other opponents of the proposed project came to the Alberta legislature Monday to press their concerns.
Energy Minister Mel Knight says a panel looking at the nuclear question is still working on its report and he doesn't have it yet.
Let's take a step back in time to February of 2007, this is when the problem seems to have started for Haldimand County Council. The problem I am referring to is that some residents feel they were shut out of a very important decision that council made on their behalf.
Haldimand County council took a vote in regards to sending a letter to Premier Dalton McGuinty asking for his endorsement of a "proposed nuclear" plant in Nanticoke. The vote was 4-3 in "favour" of sending this letter. The problem I see is that Councillor Delmonte "voted" on this, and in fact voted in "favour".
Councillor Delmonte works for US steel (formerly known as Stelco) and in the past when any issue came up at council regarding US steel, Delmonte "always" proclaimed a "Conflict of Interest" and therefore refrained from influencing or voting on any issues in relation to US Steel no matter how small! One particular issue was the "proposed ferry" across Lake Erie. This was a venture that involved US steel and Delmonte refrained from voting.
This is what I found on the Haldimand County website;
1) PED-GM-01-2007 Re; Nuclear Power Plant
a) Frank Harrison PHD Corporate Manager-Environment & Engineering, Stelco Inc, regarding potential use of Stelco Inc. lands for the location of a Nuclear Power Facility.
Moved by Councillor Boyko
Seconded by Councillor Ricker
1) That report PED-GM-01-2007 Re Nuclear Power Plant dated November 29th, 2006 be received.
Carried (Unanimously) 7-0
Recommendation 20 (tabled motion)
Moved by Councillor Boyko
Seconded by Councillor Grice
That the Ministry of Energy be advised that Haldimand County is interested in looking at alternative energy generation options, including Nuclear within Haldimand County.
And that this position be conveyed to the Minister during meetings at the ROMA Conference in February.
Carried (Unanimously) 7-0
Now in this case Delmonte has been "fully engaged" on the issue, even though Bruce Power is working with US Steel in a possible land deal. As far as I know this is the first time that he has not proclaimed a "Conflict of Interest" when it comes to US Steel.
The reason why the three council members voted "against" this letter of endorsement was the lack of public input! So what would have happened if Delmonte had taken his usual stand? Well that answer is pretty simple, the letter would not have been sent until the "public" was notified!
Now this brings to an interesting thing that Mayor Trainer told me on the phone the other day. She stated that Councillor Delmonte was now going to proclaim a "Conflict" in regards to this whole Nuclear issue. I said Pardon me? to Mayor Trainer, and she repeated her statement! I said isn't he too late to back out now? He has already voted and been fully involved in the whole process.
I personally see this as a very serious problem. Now I don't know what Delmonte does for US Steel, but I do know that he has always refrained from voting on any issues regarding US Steel.
What Delmonte has done according to Mayor Trainer makes no sense to me. Delmonte votes, seconds, is fully involved in the process and now he is going to refrain and back down? This cannot be legal even for a Council member!
Monday, November 24, 2008
I put some links at the top left hand corner for anyone who wants to track and monitor Bruce Powers EA progress.
Major Projects Management Office
This link is for Nanitcoke; http://www2.mpmo-bggp.gc.ca/MPTracker/projectsummary-resumedeprojet.aspx?pid=91
Welcome to the newly released Major Projects Management Office’s tracking and monitoring system, MPMO Tracker.
The MPMO Tracker is a public web-based system designed to track and monitor the progress of major resource projects through the federal regulatory system.
Please be advised that the MPMO Tracker is not designed to capture information in real time nor is it intended to be the official source for all regulatory information relating to major resource projects.
For example, pursuant to Section 55(1) of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (the Act), the Canadian Environmental Assessment Registry is the official source of public information and records related to environmental assessments (EA) conducted under the Act.
It also provides timely notice about the start of an EA and opportunities for public participation.
Her Majesty the Queen in right of Canada, as represented by the Minister of Natural Resources (NRCan), makes no representations or warranties about the suitability for any purpose of the information and documents obtained by using the MPMO Tracker (Information), including but not limited to, effectiveness, completeness, accuracy or fitness for a particular purpose.
NRCan does not assume any liability in respect of any damage or loss incurred or suffered as a result of the use of the MPMO Tracker or any Information.
In no event shall NRCan be liable in any way for loss of revenue or contracts, or any other consequential loss of any kind resulting from the use of the MPMO Tracker or any Information.
We invite you to explore the MPMO Tracker. Click here to begin
OPG had a table at Toby's Energy Symposium last week and it was quite interesting. I picked up their CD called "Generating Power from Biomass". You can go online and view this video at www.opg.com I didn't check out the site but I am sure that you can contact someone and get a copy of the CD sent to you if you are on slo-mo dial up like I am.
I would have written an article about this alternative clean technology but I wouldn't have done a great job explaining it to you. So view the CD or request a copy of your own. Below is an excellent read on what has been going on in the testing of burning biomass instead of coal.
It would be interesting to find out if Haldimand County Council was aware of what has been going on at OPG in Nanticoke, and if they sent a letter off to Premier Dalton McGuinty in "support" of this clean technology. If this technology is developed and is put in place in Nanticoke that would secure "600" jobs and create many more jobs.
OPG testing biomass fuel in coal-fired power plants
RENÉ JOHNSTON/TORONTO STAR FILE PHOTO
Coal is piled for storage at the Nanticoke station on Lake Erie. Up to four of its eight units could be converted to burn wood pellets instead of dirty coal.
Nov 24, 2008
Nanticoke generating station in Haldimand County is the largest coal-fired power plant in North America and as the workhorse for Ontario's electricity system, shutting it down by 2014 won't be easy.
It employs 600 people. It's an anchor for the provincial power grid, providing the voltage support needed to push electricity around southern Ontario. It's capable of supplying 4,000 megawatts of power, or enough to supply 15 per cent of the province's electricity needs.
It's why Duncan Hawthorne, chief executive of nuclear operator Bruce Power, wants to build a new nuclear plant beside Nanticoke. It will create jobs and stimulate the economy, he argues. It will provide voltage support for the grid and more than replace the power lost when Nanticoke is mothballed (though we all know he wouldn't be able to build a new nuclear plant before 2014).
When Hawthorne proposed the new plant three weeks ago, Energy and Infrastructure Minister George Smitherman was quick to shoot him down. Smitherman has different plans for Nanticoke, and said in an interview last week he's "cautiously optimistic" it will work. The idea: burn biomass instead of coal.
"It's an exciting option," says Smitherman, who in September directed the Ontario Power Authority to look at ways to add more renewables to the grid. He specifically asked the power authority to explore the potential of burning biomass in coal-fired plants. "I think it's going to be about 18 months before we have enough information to know what is possible."
Figuring out how to burn biomass such as wood or switchgrass pellets could solve many problems at once. The government could make good on its commitment to phase out coal. It could keep a sizeable amount of electricity generation in the area without having to build new transmission lines or plants, whether nuclear or natural gas.
It could continue to provide some much-needed voltage support for the grid, meaning less need to install expensive gear to compensate for the voltage losses.
It could keep local jobs and potentially create even more. That's because instead of importing coal, which is a flow of capital out of the province, OPG's need for biomass would stimulate a local industry for collecting wood or agricultural waste and turning it into fuel pellets. If an energy crop like switchgrass or poplar is chosen, it would also create opportunities for farmers that have seen markets for tobacco and ginseng disappear.
Most of all, it would lead to much cleaner power. Sulphur dioxide from biomass, particularly wood, only exists in trace amounts. There's no mercury. There are nitrogen oxides emissions, but far less than burning coal and some units at Nanticoke have selective catalytic reduction systems that can remove much of those emissions. Pollution-control equipment at Nanticoke that keeps soot and other particulates from entering the air can also be used for biomass.
That leaves greenhouse gases. When you burn wood or agricultural waste it releases the same amount of carbon dioxide as burning coal. The difference is that the CO2 that enters the air is theoretically carbon-neutral – that is, it gets reabsorbed in new plant growth. I say theoretically because it assumes biomass harvested is plant life that's replaced.
Coal, which contains CO2 absorbed by plant life millions of year ago, releases "new" CO2 when it is dug up and burned. So, from a climate-change perspective, burning biomass is better than burning coal because it doesn't increase the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere. In fact, wood and agricultural waste ends up decaying anyway, and this releases methane – a more potent greenhouse gas than CO2.
Dozens of Scandinavian power plants in burn biomass as fuel. In August, Atlanta-based Georgia Power asked its local electricity regulator if it could convert one of its 100-megawatt coal plants to wood.
Some jurisdictions are looking at burning coal together with biomass, but Chunbao Xu, a professor of chemical engineering at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay who is working on OPG's biomass program, says it makes sense to burn 100 per cent biomass rather than blend it.
The ash that results from burning coal is currently sold to the cement industry as an additive, says Xu, and blending it with biomass contaminates that ash. While the ash from pure biomass can't be used in cement, it can be used for waste treatment or as a sodium- and potassium-rich fertilizer for agriculture. "There are many different uses," he says.
Xu and OPG are working together to solve some technical issues with burning biomass. The ash can build up on boilers and heat-transfer units, potentially reducing operating life and requiring more maintenance, at an added cost.
OPG is testing biomass on all four of its coal plants. Grain screenings have been burned at Thunder Bay generating station and Lambton station will soon be testing dried distillers grain, a by-product of ethanol production.
The Atikokan plant successfully burned only wood pellets in July for one day. A three-day test will be conducted in early December.
Chris Young, vice-president of business development for OPG's fossil fuels division, is confident in the potential of biomass. "We don't believe there will be insurmountable technical issues, particularly around Atikokan."
Atikokan will likely be the first plant converted to biomass. Its boilers are better suited to burning biomass, it can receive fuel by railcar and wood supply from forest slash and sawmill residue is plentiful in northern Ontario.
But Young admits that Nanticoke is the "big prize" for Ontario and OPG is working toward the longer-term goal of converting as many as four of Nanticoke's eight units.
Coal can be stored outside, exposed to the weather, but biomass can't. That means large enclosed storage areas would be necessary. The biggest challenge, however, would be making sure there is adequate supply of biomass fuel.
Young says OPG is talking with forest-product companies about supply issues. "What we intend to do is work through a competitive supply process with the forest and agriculture industry," he says.
The company has made clear it will not use food crops and it doesn't want to compete with other industrial users of biomass and drive up the market price of the fuel. Instead, it envisions signing a long-term contract for biomass supply that assures stable pricing, secure supply and the economies of scale that can turn niche markets into massive industry.
"We're talking about a different paradigm," he says. "It's a good equation for Ontario, but the economics of it all still have to be tested."
Getting the same amount of power from biomass as that provided from burning coal does cost more. But given the savings that would come from using an existing plant and the stability of signing a long-term contract for fuel, it may be a premium worth paying.
Factor in the benefits to the climate, the environment and the local economy and it could very well be a bargain.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
I thought I would do a bit of searching in regards to Bruce Powers EA application, to see if it was in fact official. And bingo there you have it the EA is official. I must have fallen a sleep at the wheel!
Actually it is "old news today". That was like driving through a small town, don't blink, you know the rest!
Bruce Power applied for an EA and "10" days later it is official!
So here is the information regarding the application. This includes Bruce Power's letter and Application details.
CNSC Receives Application for Licence to Prepare Site for a New Nuclear Plant Project in Haldimand-Norfolk
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 7, 2008
Ottawa – On October 31, 2008, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) received an application for a licence to prepare a site and a project description from Bruce Power Erie Inc. for a proposed new nuclear power plant in the Haldimand-Norfolk region of southern Ontario.
The submission mentioned that two nuclear reactors would be built at the future plant to potentially generate between 2,200 and 3,200 megawatts of electricity to the Ontario grid.
The application for a licence to prepare a site is the first in a series of applications to build and operate a new nuclear power plant, as part of the CNSC licensing process.
"Canada is at the forefront of nuclear regulation in the world, thanks to the development of a rigorous and efficient system for licensing new nuclear power plants. This system, combined with CNSC’s extensive experience in regulating a wide range of nuclear activities, can assure Canadians that we strive for the highest standards of health, safety, security and environmental protection," said Michael Binder, President and CEO of the CNSC. "
At the same time, we proceed in an open and transparent manner, which includes significant public participation throughout the entire process, starting with the environmental assessment," Mr. Binder added.
Next, the CNSC will be reviewing the project description to ensure that its documentation is complete. If necessary, the nuclear regulator will request Bruce Power Erie to provide any missing or additional information.When the project description is deemed to be adequate, the CNSC will initiate the environmental assessment process under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act.
The environmental assessment (EA) process is a pre-requisite for the licensing of a new nuclear power plant. An EA identifies whether a specific project is likely to cause significant environmental effects, and determines if those effects can be avoided or mitigated.
No licence decision can be made before an EA has been completed. While carrying out an EA, the CNSC works closely with other provincial and federal agencies and consults the public and aboriginal groups.
Further developments in the proposed project — starting with the application for a licence to prepare site and the project description — will also be tracked through the Government of Canada’s recently created Major Projects Management Office.
About the CNSC:The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission regulates the use of nuclear energy and materials to protect the health, safety and security of Canadians and the environment; and to respect Canada's international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy.
- 30 -
Covering letter and application for a licence to prepare site received from Bruce Power Erie Inc. (CNSC has not reviewed the application for its completeness)
INFO-0756 (Revision 1): Licensing Process for New Nuclear Power Plants in Canada
For more information, media may contact:Aurèle GervaisMedia and Community RelationsCanadian Nuclear Safety CommissionTel.: 613-996-6860
Bruce Power Erie - Proposal to Construct and Operate New Nuclear Power Plant
Environmental assessment start date: November 10, 2008
Type: Comprehensive Study
CEAR Reference Number: 08-03-43757
Proponent: Bruce Power Erie
Location: Nanticoke , Haldimand County , Ontario
November 17, 2008: The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is required to ensure that a comprehensive study is conducted commencing on November 10, 2008 in relation to the project: Proposal by Bruce Power Erie to Construct and Operate a new nuclear power plant at Nanticoke, in Haldimand County.
The CNSC has been determined to be a Responsible Authority (RA). Other RA's and expert federal authorities will be identified pursuant to the Federal Coordination Regulations.
November 7, 2008: CNSC Receives Application for Licence to Prepare Site for a New Nuclear Power Plant Project in Haldimand-Norfolk
Project Description The CNSC has received a project description from Bruce Power Erie for the construction and operation of up to two new nuclear reactors at the Lake Erie Industrial Park at Nanticoke for the production of approximately 2,200 to 3,200 MWe of electrical generating capacity for supply to the Ontario grid. The proposed site is located on the north shore of Lake Erie in Haldimand County .
The scope of Bruce Power Erie's proposal includes preparation of the site, construction, operation, refurbishment if required, and eventual decommissioning and abandonment of the two new nuclear power reactors. Operations would involve activities required to operate and maintain the new reactor units, including management of conventional and radioactive waste. Bruce Power Erie is considering a range of reactor designs, but has not yet decided on a specific technology.
Under section 5 of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act , an environmental assessment is required in relation to this project because the CNSC may issue a permit or licence under subsection 24(2) of the Nuclear Safety and Control Act .
For further information on this Environmental Assessment, please refer to CEAR Number 08-03-43757 and contact:
John Clarke Environmental Assessment Specialist Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission P.O. Box 1046 , Station B 280 Slater St. Ottawa ON K1P 5S9 Telephone: 613-943-9919 or 1-800-668-5284 Fax: 613-995-5086
The following article was sent to me today, although it is a few months old it is a very good read;
Nuclear claims and commercial contradictions
Toby Barrett: June, 2008
The signs of summer in Ontario: the sun is shining, the grass is growing and the birds are singing, declared smog-days are beginning to add-up and along with them, the related debate regarding the best route to meeting energy demands while achieving environmental goals begins to heat up once more.
Of course here in Haldimand and Norfolk Counties this debate takes on even greater significance, as local governments, workers, entrepreneurs and residents brace for the new energy reality that the McGuinty Government continues to promise, but fails to deliver.
And as we sit under the cloud of coal-closure deadlines and then new deadlines (now slated for 2014?) it is incumbent on all of us to consider the potential and drawbacks of different energy sources that may be counted on in the future to provide power and jobs in this area for years to come.
As I've written in the past, I have worked to ensure that science, research and information is provided to the people of our communities to allow for educated input from those future local energy decisions will affect the most before putting our eggs into any basket.
It was now over a year ago, following a McGuinty announcement for a $40 billion nuclear program for Ontario and the promise of consultation that I wrote the Premier for answers to local energy questions. My correspondence requested that 1. government hold public hearings on the future of electricity generation in our area; and 2. provide a cost comparison between nuclear generation and coal-fired generation that includes carbon capture and clean-air technology. I continue to await a response - or action - on either front.
As I feel it is essential that the people of Haldimand and Norfolk are given the information to influence important energy - and related economic and environmental - decisions for the future I have not stood still while I wait for government to come forward with answers.
A year ago, I held an energy symposium in Jarvis - a symposium that included stakeholders representing many perspectives on the generation of energy. Further, I have continued to meet with stakeholders both at Queens Park and at our home offices in Simcoe and Dunnville - while attending, or sending representatives to local energy meetings.
Recently a number of area meetings have again concentrated on the issue of the potential for nuclear energy in Nanticoke - one of the main focuses has been the relative "green"-ness, of nuclear compared to other energy sources. Given some of the claims being made I thought I would take this opportunity to report some recent findings.
Many will recall the ads run by the Canadian Nuclear Association - a $1.7 million ad campaign in fact - touting nuclear as, "clean, reliable and affordable." What many may not recall is the subsequent false advertising complaint filed by environmental, church and health groups submitted to the Competition Bureau amid renewed debate about the nuclear option as an alternative to fossil fuels.
The coalition filing the claim given a number of findings from a report of the Pembina Institute, titled, "Nuclear Power in Canada: An Examination of Risks, Impacts and Sustainability."
A Pembina report found that the Canadian nuclear sector produces:
-An estimated 575,000 tonnes of acidic tailings each year from the mining of uranium fuel. These contain a range of acids, long-lived radioactive material, heavy metals and other contaminants.
-Approximately 85,000 waste-fuel bundles annually. As of 2003, 1.7 million radioactive bundles were in storage at reactor sites. It's estimated these wastes will have to be secured for approximately a million years.
-Uranium mining and milling operations are found to be significant sources of releases of sulphur dioxide (SO2), volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Releases of NOx, particulate matter (PM) and sulphuric acid arise from refining and conversion activities.
-Total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with uranium mining, milling, refining, conversion and fuel fabrication in Canada are estimated at between 240,000 and 366,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Add to this the fact that, Health Canada and Environment Canada have determined that the discharge from nuclear plants meets the criteria to be categorized as toxic under the Canada Environmental Protection Act.
As both the local and provincial energy debate moves forward, I will continue to advocate for comprehensive communication and public consultation. It is incumbent on decision-makers to consider the local economy, environment and the informed wishes of the residents before jumping to conclusions that will impact our own and future generations.
Bruce Power will be appearing as a delegation at the Council in Committee meeting Monday November 24th at 1:00pm. They will also be in Norfolk on Tuesday November 25th. My understanding is that Bruce Power will update council on some open houses that will take place the first week of December.
I went onto the Bruce Power website (I have a link to the left under Nuclear) to get the information and post it here, but I had problems downloading the file. There is a section that is dedicated to Haldimand/Norfolk.
Bruce Power has one section that is called "your voice counts", you can send them any questions or comments that you have. Please visit their site often. It is up to you to stay informed and be involved!
I was trying to find a news release by Bruce Power in regards to the EA. It seems that from the article below the EA process has officially started, but I could not confirm this.
Thanks to one of my posters here is a link to the following information from Bruce Power;
Haldimand County :
Month One of Energy Assessment Down - Much More To Come Says Bruce Power
As the first month of Bruce Power's energy assessment is coming to an end, an EA Public Participation Coordinator says there's much more to come.
Peter Brown says so far the assessment has started a process to understanding the community and environment, marrying the technology of nuclear with the environment and determining if its feasible .
He says that already one advantage of the Nanticoke site is transmission and exploring possibilities.
He also says that Bruce wants to enable the community to understand the process and to make up their own mind about nuclear in Haldimand-Norfolk.
The group will be hosting several open houses and community information sessions from 3-8pm:
December 1 - Port Dover Lions Community Centre
December 2 - Jarvis Community Centre
December 3 - Simcoe Recreation Centre
December 4 - Cayuga Kinsmen Community Centre
Please attend at least one of the open houses, it is up to all of us to be involved in the process!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
A little late getting this one posted, but I just found this news release on the Haldimand County Website. I don't recall this being in any of our local newspapers.
For Immediate Release
Dated: October 31, 2008
Haldimand County Council welcomes the announcement from Bruce Power of its intention to commence the initiation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) in support of its proposal to establish a nuclear generation station within the Lake Erie Industrial Park near Nanticoke. This proposal complements existing generation in this area and with other proposed generation facilities takes advantage of significant transmission capability.
Mayor Marie Trainer indicated that, in 2007, Haldimand County Council passed resolutions supporting the initiation of an environmental assessment. The public consultation process will apprise the public of all the issues associated with a nuclear power facility and to determine the willingness of the community to host such a facility.
“Council unanimously supports the initiation of the environmental assessment process and the extensive community and stakeholder engagement requirements that is associated with this step. Many opportunities will be provided over the nearly three years it will take to complete it so our citizens and businesses can provide their input” she said.
The Environmental Assessment process is a planning decision making process that will allow a complete and comprehensive assessment of the proposal through the requirement of rigorous supporting studies and the open and full engagement of all stakeholders.
Should this project proceed to construction, information provided by Bruce Power and independent research conducted by the County indicates that a nuclear generation facility would provide significant economic benefit to the County economy. The project has the potential to create a thousand long term stable jobs, significant construction employment and new assessment.
Haldimand County, through its Official Plan, has designated and protected a significant amount of land for large scale industrial and employment uses near Nanticoke. The County is interested to learn that this proposal envisions the nuclear generating facility as being part of a larger clean energy hub for the Province by partnering with other organizations to develop hydrogen, solar and wind generation. As a result the ‘Lake Erie Industrial Park’ has significant potential to help meet the electricity needs of the Province for the coming decades.
Haldimand County is excited about today’s announcement and is committed to ensuring that the community is kept informed and involved throughout this process and has established a special purpose committee to assist in this regard.
Further information please contact: Councillor Buck Sloat – Chair – Nanticoke Area Power Generation Committee (905) 961-3270 Don Boyle – CAO Haldimand County – (905) 318-5932
Petition Seeks Moratorium on Nanticoke Nuclear Proposal
For immediate release: November 18, 2008
Grand Erie Energy Quest, a grassroots group of concerned residents of Haldimand and Norfolk Counties, is launching a petition requesting a moratorium on nuclear development in Nanticoke, Ontario.
Without any formal public consultation, the Municipal Councils of Haldimand and Norfolk Counties have endorsed a Bruce Power proposal for an Environmental Assessment. Resolutions passed by both councils in the spring of 2007 have supported the first stage in Bruce’s proposal to build two nuclear reactors at Nanticoke.
The group’s petition requests that there be a complete moratorium on nuclear development until the issues of contamination, costs, security, and public consultation are adequately addressed.
The lack of public consultation by local municipalities is one of the main points addressed by the petition. Haldimand Council has refused three times to approve a citizen’s delegation regarding concerns about the nuclear proposal.
In addition to the problem of a lack of public input, citizens’ worries revolve around issues such as radioactive waste, cost overruns, social and biotic impact. Some residents feel that competitive alternatives to nuclear power have not been adequately addressed or explored by local political leaders.
“A big concern is that we feel that we’ve been completely left out of a decision-making process that will affect not only our own lives but the lives of our grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren,” said Jim Elve, one of the authors of the petition. “Now that Bruce Power has committed $30 million to the first stage of construction, the snowball is rolling downhill and it won’t be easy to stop.”
Copies of the petition will be available for signing at MPP Toby Barrett’s Energy Symposium in Jarvis this Thursday evening, November 20th.
Grand Erie Energy Quest Jim Elve - 519-443-8085 - P.O. Box 490, Waterford, ON N0E 1Y0 - email: email@example.com://www.energyquest4nanticoke.ca/
download the petition from the GEEQ website
Nuclear Nanticoke? Not so fast.
To: Norfolk County Council, Haldimand County Council, Legislature of Ontario, the Honourable Diane Finley and the Honourable Toby Barrett.
Without any formal public consultation, County Councils in both Haldimand and Norfolk have unanimously endorsed the first step in building two nuclear reactors.
The nuclear power industry has failed to address public concern over the issues of safety and security in the storage and handling of hazardous radioactive spent fuel.
Nuclear power is not emissions-free with its pollution intensive activities in uranium mining, transportation and refining.
No nuclear project has ever come in on budget or on time with the taxpayer and the utility customer paying for cost overruns that typically range in the billions of dollars.
We, the undersigned citizens, demand a complete moratorium on nuclear development until the issues of contamination, costs, security, and public consultation are adequately addressed.
Second anti-nuclear petition emerges
Posted By Monte Sonnenberg, SIMCOE REFORMER
A second petition is in circulation opposing the idea of nuclear reactors in Nanticoke.
Titled "Nuclear Nanticoke? Not so fast," the petition calls on Norfolk council, Haldimand council, Queen's Park and Ottawa to declare a moratorium on new nuclear generating stations until a host of issues related to the industry are addressed. These include the safe disposal of nuclear waste and the huge cost overruns that plague the industry.
Grand Erie Energy Quest -- sponsor of the petition -- also wants Bruce Power to suspend plans for an environmental assessment in Nanticoke until Norfolk council and Haldimand council fully air the issue in public. GEEQ is angry that Norfolk council and Haldimand council passed resolutions favourable to Bruce Power last year without entertaining public input.
"What Norfolk and Haldimand councils have done is declare Norfolk and Haldimand as willing host communities," says GEEQ spokesperson Jim Elve of Waterford, an environmental activist and member of the Green Party. "We seem to have more of a discussion about where to put a dog park than a nuclear facility."
Dunnville Coun. Lorne Boyko doesn't understand GEEQ's complaint. An environmental assessment, he said yesterday, is the proper means of airing concerns and fielding public input on an issue of this magnitude. Municipal councils, he added, are ill-equipped for the job.
"Is nuclear power right for Haldimand County?" Boyko said. "I don't know. But I know I'll have a pretty good idea after the environmental assessment. It's almost like they are petitioning against themselves. They are getting what they want."
In a news release yesterday, GEEQ described itself as "a grassroots group of concerned residents of Haldimand and Norfolk counties." The group doesn't believe Bruce Power will conduct an environmental assessment. Rather, it describes the $30-million, three-year study as "the first stage of construction."
"The snowball is rolling down hill and it won't be easy to stop," Elve said in his release.
Bruce Power spokesman James Scongack says initiatives like this are to be expected wherever nuclear reactors are proposed.
"There will always be a group of people who -- no matter how adequate the process -- will oppose it," he said. "I don't think anyone at this point is asking anyone to oppose or support anything. I don't put a lot of weight on this. The public consultation -- the public dialogue -- is only beginning."
Scongack plans to make a presentation at Norfolk council Nov. 25. During that presentation, he is expected to announce a series of open houses where Bruce Power will field questions and comments from the public.
Oct. 31, Bruce Power announced it is interested in constructing two nuclear reactors on 2,000 acres of vacant land in the Nanticoke Industrial Park. If the project gets the green light, the reactors will come on line around 2018.
Earlier this month, Donna Pitcher of South Cayuga said she will circulate a petition asking that the issue of nuclear reactors in Nanticoke be included as a question on 2010 municipal ballots in Norfolk, Haldimand, Hamilton and Brant County.
Those interested in downloading a copy of the GEEQ petition can do so by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
519-426-3528 ext. 150
The Hamilton Spectator
NANTICOKE (Nov 19, 2008)
A community group has sprung up to fight a proposal to build two nuclear reactors in the industrial area of Haldimand County.
Bruce Power, which operates a nuclear power plant on Lake Huron near Port Elgin, is seeking to build the reactors beside the coal-fired Nanticoke Generating Station, which is set to close in 2014.
The province is not endorsing the idea, but it has support from both Haldimand and Norfolk councils, plus local MP and cabinet minister Diane Finley.
A group calling itself Grand Erie Energy Quest announced yesterday it has launched a petition requesting a moratorium on nuclear development in Nanticoke.
It will be asking residents to sign it tomorrow night at MPP Toby Barrett's energy symposium at the Jarvis Community Centre.
The group asks that a moratorium be put in place until the issues of contamination, costs, security and public consultation are adequately addressed. Bruce is seeking approval from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission to conduct an environmental assessment.
It could take three years and cost the company $30 million.
Haldimand Mayor Marie Trainer, who has encouraged the province to support the nuclear option for Nanticoke, said she's heard both pro and con from residents, but "the majority have been for it."
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I have been asked by a few people to explain why I am attempting to stop "progress" here in Haldimand County. This is in regards to a petition that I am working on about the Environmental Assessment by Bruce Power for a possible Nuclear Power Plant in Haldimand (Nanticoke).
I want to make myself perfectly clear that my problem is with the process and the path that our Council members have taken on our behalf. And it is just that simple! I am not trying to stop "progress".
I have not decided 100% whether I am in favour of a Nuclear Power Plant in Nanticoke, and I am sure that there are many that feel the same way I do. Each of us will have our own opinions and thoughts on this issue, but what is missing for me personally is I have not had say!
Our elected Council members in Haldimand County have made that decision on our behalf. This was just plain wrong!
I don’t have a problem with council making regular every day decisions on how to run this county, but this decision was way behind their scope of "responsibilities". How much do they really know about Nuclear Power?
So that brings me to a few concerns and questions that if we were involved in the process with our Council maybe we would today have some answers;
Bruce Power has published the economic impact that this would have on the community, and has obviously shared this with our Council members.
Where did this information come from, and what back up documentation is there? Where are the Staff reports from Haldimand County?
The Environmental Assessment Process;
What are all the steps?
What role does the public play in this process?
Does the public get to vote on this?
What role does the County play in this process?
Is the process Fair?
I would like to see all the related information and all Staff Reports that relate to this question. In particular the background information that staff would have provided to our Council members.
Used Fuel and Waste Management;
Does staff and Council have the knowledge and the background related to this issue. Have they "fully" investigated and understand the scope of Waste management at this level? Again all staff reports and Council’s thoughts on this would have been appreciated.
Security and Safety;
Other then the information from Bruce Power, what other documentation and expert consultation has Haldimand County done. Again staff reports to back this up.
Again other then the information provided by Bruce Power what information can staff provide on the effects? Has staff hired and consulted with experts in this field?
What other alternatives were investigated? Meetings and reports from staff in relation to this are also critical. Has Haldimand County requested from the Provincial government funds be spent on the upgrades to the Coal Plant? If so, what response have they received?
I could go on and I am sure that many of you have even more questions.
My problem…We Were Never Asked…..
As I stated earlier this was a decision that Haldimand County Councillors should never have taken on without our input! They have certainly taken enough time in the last two years to speak to Bruce Power, but wouldn't speak to residents as they stated it was premature.
It looks like our Council has put us on a road where there is no turning around. As Councillor Sloat so eloquently put it….."The county will have an opportunity for giving input but will have no "decision making role".
Why on earth would our "elected officials" start a process that they themselves can not vote on or have a final say?
Is this "Responsible Government?"
There were many simple ways that Haldimand County Council could have engaged the community, but they once again decided that our "Voices" did not need to be heard!
Now maybe if we had been involved in the process from the beginning, and we took part in the decision to say, "We Are A Willing Host" I would feel differently today!
Friday, November 14, 2008
Karen Best, reporter for the Chronicle wrote a very detailed article today in regards to a possible Nuclear Plant here in Haldimand (Nanticoke). Headline: Nuclear Plant becomes more than a Mirage".
As some of you may already know I am writing a petition with the help of a resident from Norfolk. This petition is in regards to the path that Haldimand/Norfolk councils have been going down the last 2 years.
Haldimand Council over the past two years has taken their time as our "elected representatives" to meet with MP Diane Finley and Bruce Power but has denied us the residents our right to have our say! We were told it was premature. Now if I am not mistaken when council is together as a "whole" this is "official" business?
When I was asked about what Haldimand County Council could have done differently, I didn't have a problem with a list of things they could have done to inform us and then ultimately ask us if we would join them (Council) in announcing that "We are a Willing Host". I am sure that some of you could come up with more suggestions for council.
Here are a few things that could have been done;
Public Announcements! Every week Haldimand County has an ad in "every" local paper that is paid by our tax dollars!
Public Meetings! Haldimand County has public meetings in chambers on a regular basis in regards to "Development", it is part of the process, is this not a major development?
Town Hall Meetings; Each council member could have taken the time to have their own town hall meetings, after all some did promise that if they were elected they would do this anyway!
An Insert in Our Tax Bills! This is a very cost effective way to inform the residents. Our tax bills are already sent out on a regular basis. Some of us even get them more often then others! One of these inserts could have been a simple "Ballot type Question".
Now as we all are aware none of the above has taken place. Why? Well up until this news article came out I would have said that council didn't want to hear what we had to say, but it seems that it is much deeper than that!
It looks like we have been given a "one way ticket". All thanks to our duly elected Municipal Council Members!
So Bruce Power will get their approval for an EA, they will have several public meetings, they have already set up a website, have already sent out some mailings, and have already placed full page ads in local newspapers. But in the end, will we really be part of the "decision" into whether a Nuclear Plant is built here or not. Well if I read correctly the comment from Karen's article correctly the answer is "NO".
Here is what Councillor Sloat said;
"We feel we are a willing host and the environmental assessment process will prove it one way or another," The county will have an opportunity for giving input but will have no decision making role." stated Councillor Sloat!
Is Bruce Power or Haldimand County going to have some kind of "ballot" that is fair? What I mean by fair is will this question be put to the "residents" like a ballot in an election? Or are they going to judge our "willingness" on the basis of who gets involved, or on the minimum requirements of the EA.
So this is where a petition will come in to play. If this petition was to state that until such a time that we can be convinced that the residents have been fully involved in this process by "our" Council, not Bruce Power, we are "not" a "willing host".
The petition should be ready by next week. We will then see just how much of a "willing host" the residents of Haldimand/Norfolk are. This will take time, but the EA process will also take time.
Here is the link to the entire article, it is a good read;
Thursday, November 13, 2008
W5 News Story on Port Hope - What Lies Beneath
If you didn’t have the chance take a look at this special segment on W5 – Port Hope is a community divided.
I was appalled that the waste water going into Lake Ontario has extreme levels – Tests done showed levels of arsenic up to 5 times higher than current Ontario guidelines -- and uranium almost 50 times higher.
The CNSC allows Cameco (a Bruce Power Partner) to have much higher levels of arsenic in waste water than the Ontario guidelines, and sets no limit on the amount of uranium.
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Association would also oversee a nuclear plant at Nanticoke; do we want uranium, arsenic flowing into Lake Erie!
Watch this segment (there are 2 parts) and I’m sure you will have a lot of unanswered questions about nuclear!
After I posted this blog and went into the link and read the story. I thought this was a video and as I am on dial up, it is usually not an option for me.
So here is the story, it is a Must Read!
Part#1 is the story (below) and Part two is a video.
The picture perfect town of Port Hope lies on the shores of Lake Ontario, 100 km east of Toronto. Some call this historic town one of the prettiest in Ontario, famous for its antique shopping and elegant bed and breakfasts.
But Port Hope is famous for more than historic buildings and scenic views. The town is home to Canada's oldest nuclear refinery; a looming structure that sits on the shores of the lake, right in the middle of town.
At the height of World War Two, Eldorado was owned by the Canadian government and manufactured the uranium for the first atomic bomb. Today, it's privately-owned by Cameco, the world's largest producer of uranium.
But for some Port Hope residents, nuclear doesn't rest easy. Sanford and Helen-Anne Haskill are two of these people. The Haskills have a clear view of Cameco from the farm their family has owned for more than two centuries. And not far from where the Sanfords live, on the edge of town lies a waste site which stores nuclear waste from the Eldorado days.
According to the Haskills, the waste doesn't always stay in the ground as it should, and this is one of their many concerns. They said a pipe that starts at the nuclear waste site and empties into Lake Ontario right behind Sanford's farm is leaking harmful toxins.
For more than 50 years, the pipe lay buried far out into Lake Ontario where it couldn't be seen. But this year, snow and ice caused a break in the pipe and now the waste water spills onto the shoreline near the Haskill farm.
"There's too much arsenic in it. There's too much uranium and there's beryllium in it and it's a nasty little guy," Sanford Haskill told W-FIVE. Tests done showed levels of arsenic up to 5 times higher than current Ontario guidelines -- and uranium almost 50 times higher.
Haskill took the test results to Cameco and to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, the government agency which regulates the nuclear industry in Canada, asking them to do something about toxins spilling into the lake. But it turns out Cameco isn't breaking the law -- at least not any law Cameco is required to follow.
The CNSC allows Cameco to have much higher levels of arsenic in waste water than the Ontario guidelines, and sets no limit on the amount of uranium.
When some Port Hope residents got wind of Sanford's water test, Sanford said he received many threats.
"I've had people say I'd be better off if I was pushing daisies and all this kind of stuff to me. We've got one of the biggest split communities around," he said.
That split is clear. On one side are the Port Hopers who say the nuclear industry is clean and safe and good for the town economy. On the other side are the Port Hopers who say the nuclear industry is contaminating the town and making people sick.
Linda Thompson is the Mayor of Port Hope. She said she doesn't believe the town is divided.
"I think there are very strong feelings on both sides."
And yet some critics of Port Hope said they have the been the target of death threats and that they are terrified of continuing to speak out about what they think are real health concerns. Mayor Thompson insisted there is no reason for alarm. She denied her citizens are suffering ill effects from the nuclear industry and she backed up her views with eight Health Canada studies done over the last 20 years which have all given Port Hope a clean bill of health.
"The numerous health studies that have been done have been consistent in advising us that there are no health concerns," she told W-FIVE.
But what is safe is very much a matter of opinion. Rosalie Bertell is an epidemiologist who has spent most of her 80 years warning the world about low level radiation. Bertell is one of the world's foremost experts on the effects of uranium on humans. She said uranium dust can stay captured in people's lungs and bones and can wreak havoc over time.
Bertell argued that Health Canada's studies don't tell the full story. She said the studies done to date look primarily at cancer rates and do not look at other illnesses associated with low level radiation.
"You can get Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. You could have miscarriages and still births. You're likely to die sooner, younger or you're likely to have more chronic illness," said Bertell.
Andy Oliver, the vice president of Cameco's fuel service division insisted Cameco is a good neighbour. He said Cameco does not pollute.
"There are very low levels of uranium. They are well below any regulatory standard. They are perfectly safe," Oliver told W-FIVE.
The nuclear debate in Port Hope isn't new. It started back in the 1930's when Eldorado first opened shop. It's a debate that seems to have no end but some say there is a solution.
"Just go to zero emissions," said Sanford Haskill. "Let the federal government clean up around Cameco, get rid of all this low level stuff we've got in Port Hope and take it to a safe site. And this town is back united."
Here is an excellent editorial by Gregg McLachlan from the Simcoe Reformer. Hopefully our local newspapers here in Haldimand stay close to this issue.
The petition is in it`s final stage and will be ready by November 20th, at least that is my plan. So please stay tuned in! Please send this article to your friends and neighbours!
`Kudo`s to Gregg, I do believe you have hit the nail on the head``
Ontario Liberals in pickle, and Bruce Power knows it
Monday, November 10, 2008
BY GREGG MCLACHLAN`
That's one way to sum up what's unfolding in Nanticoke.Ontario-based Bruce Power, a private company which already operates a nuclear power plant 250 km northwest of Toronto on the shore of Lake Huron, has taken a bold step that could ultimately save Dalton McGuinty and Co.
The company's $30-million environmental assessment at an 800-acre site in the Nanticoke Industrial Park will almost certainly pave the way for it to build a nuclear power plant that starts generating electricity by 2018.
Don't entirely fall for corporate babblespeak that this assessment is purely exploratory.
In today's economic downturn, companies don't spend $30 million willy nilly.
Preliminary work has already set the stage for this study and it will likely produce few surprises: that Nanticoke is a suitable site for a nuclear plant.
Bruce Power CEO Duncan Hawthorne has been publicly touting nuclear power at Nanticoke since March 2007. The only oddity is that the province has never publicly endorsed the concept or, now, the project. At least not yet.
But we can read between the lines. It's no secret that a power window is rapidly closing on Ontario's Liberals. McGuinty has promised that the province's dirty coal-fired power plants will be shut down by 2014. That includes the Nanticoke Generating Station, the largest plant of its kind in North America.
So far, the province has made no announcement on what will replace one of the province's key hydro stations that supplies enough electricity to power millions of homes. However, one thing is certain: the province knows another significant power generator must be located in Nanticoke, purely because of the vast hydro transmission corridor that runs north from the station.
It would cost hundreds of millions of dollars and take years to acquire land and build a new corridor elsewhere (new power plant not included). Such an idea may be next to impossible today anywhere near the development-restricted Greenbelt.
All the province has said publicly so far is that it wants renewable energy sources to play a key role in replacing coal-fired power generation. Bruce Power has strategically positioned itself to meet that Liberal position --which means, eventually, McGuinty & Co., will have little choice but to endorse the Nanticoke plan.
In addition to nuclear, Bruce Power says it will study building what it calls a 'clean energy hub' involving wind, solar and hydrogen power in Haldimand-Norfolk-- which likely means Nanticoke -- through a partnership with the Canadian Hydrogen Association, University of Waterloo and McMaster University. It's that part of Bruce Power's plan that will be enticing to the Liberals who can eventually piggyback on it for a firm public-friendly green energy strategy.
Even if 50 per cent of people dislike nuclear, there's a strong likelihood the other 50 per cent will support a 'clean energy hub.'
From a purely public marketing standpoint, the 'clean energy hub' concept is a brilliant new strategy to add to the mix when considering building a nuclear power plant. So, if we read between the lines, we can surmise that:
A) The Liberals are quietly, but knowingly, letting Bruce Power go it alone and absorb the environmental lobbyists' protests over its site assessment and pursuit of nuclear power in Nanticoke;
B) Only when the timing is right (how about an election campaign?), will the Liberals announce endorsement and/or participation and/or funding in a 'clean energy hub' for Nanticoke that meets their previous pledge to use renewable energies to assist in the replacement of coal-fired generation.
In the case of the Nanticoke Generating Station, a government is simply not going to make a casual, low-key announcement about what's next at the site. For years the plant has been the high profile target of environmentalists fighting dirty emissions.
So a government announcement will be made at a time and place for maximum political and environmental gain. Bruce Power, also eyeing expansion of its nuclear operations into Alberta and Saskatchewan, is simply getting a jump start in Nanticoke on solving an Ontario dilemma well known by the Liberals.
In the meantime, do some math. The Liberals pledge to close the Nanticoke Generating Station in 2014. Bruce Power says a nuclear plant wouldn't be producing power until 2018. That leaves a gap of four years where, as it stands today, millions of homes will be short on electricity. Unless, of course, the Nanticoke coal-fired plant's life is extended yet again, or retrofitted to use another cleaner fuel source.There's plenty more intrigue left to keep you plugged into this tale for years to come.
Associate Managing Editor
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
In Flanders Fields By:
Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
Monday, November 10, 2008
There are many issues that come and go in every day life. Some of us get involved, others don't.
What would you give up to fight an issue? Would you give up your livelihood? Would you live on donations given to you by your neighbours? Would you be proud to tell people that you only have "$3.00" to your name?
Gary McHale states that he lost his home in Richmond Hill because of the Caledonia land claims, I say he lost his home because he decided not to work and pay his bills. Again I am probably being insensitive here, but give me a break it is not "Caledonia's" fault that Gary lost his home and has $3.00 dollars in his pocket!
There are many people out there today that are living from paycheck to paycheck. Some are working two jobs for minimum wage, and are too proud to say that they have not enough to support their family.
Now you may say that I am insensitive, but I grew up in a family that did live from paycheck to paycheck. My Father was a proud man, and when times were tough, he was humble. We always had food on the table, a roof over our heads, and never "needed" for anything that was an absolute necessity!
So when I see this kind of news I am a bit opinionated! Gary get a Job!
Gary is now asking the approx. 5,000 people that voted for him in the last Federal election to financially support his endeavours. Gary may just find out that many of his votes, were protest votes. I could be wrong, but time will tell if the majority of these voters do in fact give Gary $5.00 per month to support his cause. We will never know the outcome of his plea!
There are far too many people right here in Haldimand that fight to keep the roof over their heads, food on the table, and their essential bills paid. I say if you are going to donate money to anyone, give to your local charities, for those that are in need!
The following is a plea from a resident of Caledonia. This letter was full of spelling mistakes, so I took it in my own hands and corrected them! I received this in an email and it is posted on Caledonia Wake up Call;
As we continue into our third year of the occupation it has become very evident that Gary McHale has become an important voice for the Victims of Native Land Claims Occupations and violence. Gary has worked relentlessly on our behalf and has been a voice to reckon with in dealing with the issues of Native Occupations, Violence against innocent Citizens and Police inaction against the criminals.
To be able to continue the fight on our behalf Gary urgently needs our financial support. He needs money to pay for court transcripts, extra funds would enable him to pay for expert legal advice and of course he needs money to live on and survive to be there for us on another day.
Before you dismiss this plea for financial help stop and ask yourselves where would we be today without Gary's research, tenacity and penchant for seeking the truth and holding the Government and the police accountable.
Think back to the visionaries of the 60's and 70's who went to the streets to protest and think of the difference they made in our lives and then think what will happen if Gary can't continue on in his quest to ensure everyone's rights under the constitution equally.
In the past election Gary clearly demonstrated that he had the support of almost 5000 voters in Haldimand and that didn't include the many doners outside the community that supported Gary's campaign.
He also demonstrated through poll results that he clearly won the vote in Caledonia in all polls except for two and in those two he placed 2nd.
What we need is a very small commitment from all of those people who clearly supported Gary in the past election to donate at least $5.00 each per month into a war fund which Gary could use to pay his rent and other legal and court expenses in the fight for our rights.
It would be nice if all of those that voted for Gary could donate $5.00 each but reality tells us that that might not happen.
The money would be used frugally and would enable Gary to mount a sizable defense against the crimes of the Native occupiers, the lies of Fantino and the denial of the Government.
It is not uncommon for court documents and transcripts to cost $500.00 or more and as Gary continues on his quest it will become more important for him to have access to these documents.
We could set up a bank account at a local bank into which each and every one of us would diligently donate $5.00 each month and only Gary could withdraw funds from this account as needed for the continued fight.
It is our chance to get involved and become part of the solution and I know we would all feel better at the end of the day knowing we did something other than bitch about it.I would hope that several citizens of Caledonia would set up the account and oversee it's integrity and I don't propose that I nor any one directly associated with Gary would control the account.
The one thing important though is that the money be available for Gary's sole use at his discretion so that important strategic decisions aren't stymied through pettiness and bickering.
Any surplus money could be used for Gary to obtain paid legal advice on his many court challenges and at the end the surplus balance could become part of a community fund that could be used for the betterment of the community.
All of us can afford $5.00 per month and some might want to contribute more but that is their choice.
Gary needs our financial support now and I will be the first to donate my monthly $5.00 when you have the account set up for Gary's expenses.
We could go to our own personal bank and give them a standing order to deposit $5.00 each month into this war chest for Gary.
This order could be rescinded at any time should we decide that Gary no longer needs our support or we wish not to continue with it.
Without money and support the resistance will be lost and none of us want to see that happen. If anyone would like to volunteer to make this happen please contact me and we can set up a steering committee to get things on track but I do not want to be part of the citizen's group so that no one can point fingers at me, accusing me of trying to benefit financially from this program.
Gary has nothing to do with my plea for financial assistance on his behalf and he does not know about me posting it here. I have talked to Merlyn about my plan and have asked him to also help seek out volunteers to set up this account for Gary.
This would be a strong message from the people to the establishment that we want justice, equality and we will not go away.Of course if there is someone else in the community that will run an information board like Gary has been running with CaledoniaWakeupcall and take up the fight to the extent that Gary has then we would welcome you to do it and Gary's services and our financial help would no longer be needed.
Somehow I don't think we have anyone else willing to do all that Gary has done for us so we must support him at his moment of need.Jim Anderson
This is the news article that was published today in the Simcoe Reformer;
Supporters pass hat for McHale
Posted By Monte Sonnenberg, SIMCOE REFORMER
Posted 2 hours ago
Supporters of Caledonia activist Gary McHale have asked the public to support his efforts with donations of cash.
In a letter recently posted on McHale's website -- http://www.caledoniawakeupcall.com/ -- friend and supporter Jim Anderson, of Caledonia, says McHale needs help to continue court challenges related to the native standoff at the disputed Douglas Creek Estates subdivision.
Anderson adds that McHale, who ran as an independent in Haldimand-Norfolk in the Oct. 14 federal election, also needs help with living expenses.
"He needs money to pay for court transcripts, extra funds would enable him to pay for expert legal advice and, of course, he needs money to live on and survive to be there for us another day," the Anderson letter says.
Last week, McHale, of Binbrook, confirmed that his fight against the province's handling of the Caledonia file has cost him financially and professionally.
"I'm constantly in debt," he said. "At this moment in time I have $3 to my name, and that includes the change I have in the console of my car. I can't put gas in my car until someone comes through with a donation. I lost my home in Richmond Hill because of Caledonia."
McHale was a self-employed computer technician before the Caledonia land dispute erupted in February of 2006.
McHale has since devoted himself to challenging the McGuinty government's management of the crisis. This includes the toleration of native lawlessness, the proliferation of illegal smoke shops in the Caledonia area, and efforts on the part of the Ontario Provincial Police to mute and discourage non-native protestors.
McHale maintains that the McGuinty government's handling of the Caledonia situation is establishing the principle of two-tiered, race-based justice in Canada. In opposition to this, he has established a non-governmental organization called Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality (CANACE).
"Caledonia is a full-time job," said McHale, who is president of CANACE. "I survive on donations. I pay the rent when people donate money."
McHale has been tied up in court for several days since last month's election. He is fighting a charge of "counselling mischief not committed."
The OPP charged McHale following a protest in Caledonia in September, 2007. During that protest, McHale allegedly told a fellow protester to block a road with his vehicle. The protester did not comply, but the OPP proceeded with charges because counselling illegal activity is prohibited by law.
McHale placed fourth in Haldimand-Norfolk last month with 4,821 votes. He says money raised on his behalf will not be used to defray campaign expenses.
Article ID# 1288969
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Well I thought that I had read a great deal about the Nuclear Industry recently until I was sent an e-mail in regards to signing a petition. I knew that the Government was responsible if there was an incident, but I had no idea how much the taxpayer was paying for the cost overruns, the waste management and ultimately the decommissioning of a Nuclear facility even if it is privately owned!
It seems that it is a very lucrative business being in the Nuclear Circle!
When a Nuclear Plant is shut down an EA needs to be done, I knew that, but after reading this I wonder why? The cost is a 100% burden on the taxpayer! This really shocked me! I wonder just how much does it cost to decommission a Nuclear Plant?
I am more convinced now that a Nuclear Plant in Nanticoke is out of touch with reality. How can we afford this? It is time for us to demand our Government be fiscally responsible to the taxpayers!
Sign the petition for a Nuclear Cost Responsibility Act for Ontario
Every nuclear construction project in the past 25 years in Ontario has gone massively over budget. And we are all on the hook for these runaway costs, paying a nuclear debt surcharge on every kilowatt of electricity we use. Renewable and natural gas generating projects are strictly prohibited from passing on cost overruns to consumers or taxpayers. It’s time to level the playing field and end nuclear’s free ride.
Ontarios Green Future
Here is just a sample of what is on the site;
Nuclear's free ride
No renewable power project, even if it is run by a community co-op or a First Nation, is allowed to pass on capital cost overruns to ratepayers or taxpayers. Companies building natural gas-fired power plants have to play by the same rules.
But it is a different story for nuclear plant operators, who have routinely reached into our pockets to cover massive cost overruns, like the $10 billion in extra costs for the Darlington Nuclear Station or the $1.5 billion in overruns on repairs to the Pickering Station. And soon, we will be footing a big part of the bill for the mounting cost overruns on ongoing repairs to the Bruce Station.
But Ontario taxpayers are not only on the hook for nuclear capital cost overruns, we also give nuclear power operators subsidies that are not available to any other power producer:
Radioactive waste disposal costs. The Nuclear Waste Management Organization estimates these costs will be more than $20 billion for existing waste. Taxpayers will foot a major share of this bill, including 100% of any costs over $10 billion.
Nuclear Liability Costs: No private insurer will insure a nuclear plant against a major accident. Therefore, the government artificially limits the liability of nuclear plant operators to $75 million — a token sum that will be dwarfed by the real costs of even a modest accident.
Nuclear plant decommissioning: Ontario’s electricity consumers and taxpayers are responsible for 100% of the costs of taking apart and disposing of the nuclear reactors run by privately owned Bruce Power.
Just think what we could achieve if we put $50-$60 billion into energy efficiency programs, high-efficiency combined heat and power generation and clean renewable energy instead of into always late, always underperforming nuclear power projects..