Don’t exempt nuclear reactors from assessment
The government of Canada is inviting comments on the “project list” for its new proposed and controversial Impact Assessment Act. This is important and will determine which nuclear projects are fully assessed as to potential impacts and which ones get a free pass, for years into the future.
Yielding to nuclear industry pressure, the government has exempted most nuclear reactors from the project list, meaning they will not have to undergo thorough impact assessment by an independent panel prior to licensing.
This is very unwise. The new project list would allow so-called “small modular reactors” to be built anywhere in Canada – without impact assessment. Consider that environmental contamination has still not been cleaned up from the 1952 partial meltdown of the NRX reactor (a very small reactor) at Chalk River. Radioactive tritium, strontium-90 and carbon-14 are leaking into the Ottawa River from where the damaged reactor core is buried and liquid wastes from the accident were dumped.
Can you spare five minutes to tell the government not to exempt nuclear reactors from the Project List for Bill C-69?
You might add that every nuclear reactor has the potential to create devastating and deadly environmental damage. There are other exemptions that are problematic, such as for nuclear reactor decommissioning and transport of irradiated nuclear fuel and other high level radioactive wastes.