Sunday, February 06, 2011

Nuclear regulator says Bruce Power can transport reactors across Great Lakes

Canada's nuclear regulator approved a controversial plan Friday for 16 decommissioned nuclear reactors to be shipped across the Great Lakes for recycling.
The long-awaited decision by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission was given the OK despite building international protest about the shipment, which essentially will see 1,600 tonnes of radioactive waste be transported across the lakes for the first time.
In a statement, the commission said it was satisfied that Bruce Power, the country's only private nuclear operator, will meet national and international safety standards for transporting nuclear substances.
"The Commission is satisfied that Bruce Power is qualified to carry out the activities to be permitted under the licence and certificate, and that Bruce Power will make adequate provisions to protect the environment, the health and safety of persons, and to maintain national security and measures required to implement Canada's international obligations," it said.
A transport license will expire on Feb. 12, 2012. Bruce Power had said it does not plan to ship the reactors until the spring due to wintry weather conditions.
Earlier this year, the commission held public hearings into the proposed plans and heard from approximately 80 groups opposed to the transport. The groups ranged from representatives of cities through which the reactors will travel by land and air, to aboriginal associations and environmental groups. Some of those opposed were from as far away as Sweden, where the reactors eventually will be delivered.
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