Kincardine Council reaffirms support for deep geologic repository
by Sandy Lindsay
February 2, 2016
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Kincardine Council has once again reaffirmed its support for the proposed deep geologic repository (DGR) following an update presented to Council by Ontario Power Generation's (OPG) Scott Berry and Allan Webster.
Following extensive public hearings surrounding the proposed DGR and, following more than a decade of scientific research, the decision whether or not to proceed with the DGR for low and intermediate level waste (L&ILW), now rests with the newly elected Liberal government's Minister of the Environment.
Berry said that a decision regarding the Environmental Assessment (EA) is expected on March 1st. "If the EA is approved, it then goes back to the Joint Review Panel (JRP) and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) for consideration. There would be more engineering needed and specific conditions to be met before a license to proceed with construction could be issued."
The location proposed for the DGR for L&ILW is at the Bruce Nuclear site in Tiverton (ON), where existing waste is currently housed in above-ground interim storage. Following the most comprehensive and exhaustive scientific nuclear waste review in Canadian history, the recommended solution was made to construct a DGR at a depth of 680 metres below ground surface.
Although there are those against the project, the JRP in its summation recommended that, based on safety, the project "...should proceed sooner rather than later."
In addition to the DGR update, Council also heard that the 10-year Western Waste license is up for renewal in 2017 and that expansion is now needed for interim storage requirements. A new license would include additional expanded storage to the existing space, enhanced processing ability for low level waste and upgrades to existing processes and equipment.
At its meeting on Monday, February 1st, Kincardine Council almost unanimously passed a resolution that supported the DGR, with only Councilor Mike Leggett opposed.
Resolution passed by Kincardine Council
WHEREAS respecting the proposed Deep Geologic Repository solution for Ontario's low and intermediate nuclear waste, after more than a decade-long investigation and process that has been scientifically rigorous, cost millions of taxpayer dollars, has been transparent, inclusive and accommodating to every interest, leading to a strongly-worded and powerful endorsement from the federal Joint Review Panel and its recommendation that the project should proceed, sooner rather than later;
AND WHEREAS early in the process, the deep rock vault solution was selected as the preferred option by the Council of the Municipality of Kincardine, the host municipality for the world's largest nuclear energy facility and the home of the proposed Deep Geologic Repository, and has been supported by the community and by successive Councils over the years, including the current Council;
AND WHEREAS given the solid and convincing environmental and safety basis for the Deep Geologic Repository, it should be clearly understood that the voices of the host municipality and the majority of the community should be given paramount consideration in this matter;
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Mayor and Council of the Municipality of Kincardine once again reaffirm its unequivocal support for the proposed Deep Geologic Repository for low and intermediate radioactive waste and strongly encourages the federal Minister of Environment and Climate Change to approve the project to advance to the next stages of development.
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Tuesday, February 02, 2016