written for CCNews by Mike Sterling
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The Saugeen Shores Council along with other councils in the area have carefully considered the proposed DGR in Kincardine.
Collectively over a period of years they have educated themselves by attending hearings, information meetings and seminars.
The fifteen year life of the project so far has been open to public scrutiny although it takes time to cover the material and learn the lingo. Many residents work or have worked in the Nuclear Industry and this means that they have the requisite skill sets to understand the proposed process.
I don't think there is a better informed area in Ontario and certainly in Canada about nuclear power and regulation. After all, we are the home of the largest nuclear power plant in the world.
I've followed the long debates and especially the Joint Review Panel hearings that were so important in educating the community and the world. They were webcast and the written record amounted to thousands upon thousands of pages in part due to the many studies and reports that have been done over the years.
Some personal highlights for me come from the calm demeanor of many of the Council members past and present, both in Saugeen Shores and in Kincardine. They have been subjected at times to undeserved scorn.
The Council was very patient after often being accused of all manner of things in an sometimes strident manner. Some residents repeated over and over again misinterpretations of the facts.
It was all about safety from start to finish. The Joint Review Panel made it a safety issue in the final report. Their entire decision was all about safety.
They said clearly that a DGR is the safest approach above all others presented to them. (See their one paragraph summary in the second column)
The project is now in the hands of the Honourable Catherine McKenna and she has asked for more information from the proponent OPG. Click Here That's a good thing as it will bring her up to date. I wish her well in her deliberations. It has been years in the study of the issue and will still take time to sort out.
I hope the Council of Saugeen Shores gives her their views in written form. Let's all support them.
According to the Joint Review Panel ..."The DGR should be built now rather than later"
"The Panel is of the view that the sooner the waste is isolated from the surface environment the better. The Panel notes the importance of reducing and, if appropriate, reusing and recycling the waste. However, it recognizes that current technologies to alter the waste to render it no longer hazardous are limited, particularly for intermediate level waste that contains radionuclides with longer half-lives. The Panel concludes that the likelihood and consequences of an event resulting in the release of radionuclides from surface storage are greater than they would be for a DGR. The Panel is of the view that the risk of waiting until technologies are available to eliminate the hazards associated with longer-lived radionuclides outweighs the benefits."
For the full Joint Review Panel final report Click Here
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Sunday, February 21, 2016