TransCanada's other dirty, dangerous, and expensive energy scheme: Bruce Nuclear and the proposed Great Lakes radioactive waste dump
TransCanada Pipelines, infamous for its Keystone XL tar sands pipeline scheme, is also a nuclear power utility and generator of radioactive wastes.
TransCanada is a major partner in Bruce Nuclear, which leases and operates Ontario Power Generation's (OPG) Bruce Nuclear Generating Station in Kincardine, Ontario (photo, left). Bruce is one of the world's single largest nuclear power plants, with a total of nine reactors on one site: one long-shuttered early prototype reactor (Douglas Point), and eight operable commercial CANDUs (Canadian Deuterium-Uranium reactors) at the adjacent Bruce A and Bruce B nuclear power plants.
Bruce Nuclear is located on the Great Lakes shoreline.
For four decades, OPG has incinerates all of the so-called "low" level radioactive wastes (LLRWs) generated at 20 reactors across Ontario (including those generated by TransCanada for over a decade at Bruce) at the on-site Western Waste Management Facility (WWMF), with untold atmospheric releases. OPG then stores the leftover radioactive ashes, as well as all the intermediate-level radioactive wastes (ILRWs) from across the province, at the WWMF.
Now, incredibly, OPG proposes to bury all of Ontario's L&ILRWs, including those generated by TransCanada Pipeline's, in a "Deep Geologic Repository" (DGR) at Bruce. Such radioactive waste burial on the shores of the Great Lakes is unprecedent. It is actually illegal in Michigan, just 50 miles to the west across Lake Huron. It would put at risk the drinking water supply for 40 million people in 8 U.S. states, 2 Canadian provinces, and a large number of Native American First Nations.
As if the proposed L&ILRW DGR weren't bad enough already, several nearby communities -- dominated by Bruce Nuclear's monetary might, and disproportionately populated by Bruce Nuclear workers -- have even volunteered to serve as Canada's national high-level radioactive waste (HLRW) DGR! A large fraction of Canada's HLRW is already stored at the Bruce Nuclear WWMF, originating at TransCanada's Bruce Nuclear Generating Station itself.
The "Great Lakes Region Nuclear Hot Spots" map, by Anna Tilman of the International Institute of Concern for Public Health, shows these many nuclear nightmares, either already underway, or proposed, at Bruce (and beyond).
In a very real sense, TransCanada is "making a killing, while getting away with murder," at Bruce Nuclear. It is pocketing the profits from operating reactors at one of the world's single biggest nuclear power plants, while "routinely" releasing radioactivity into the environment, and now aiding and abetting OPG's proposal to bury radioactive wastes it has generated, directly on the Great Lakes shore.
Beyond Nuclear stands in solidarity with such allies as Winona "No Nukes" LaDuke in opposition to TransCanada's Keysone XL pipeline, as congressional Republicans seek to force its construction, despite its dangers to people, the environment, and the climate.
Please contact President Obama: thank him for his veto pledge agaisnt the Keystone XL pipeline, and urge him to stand strong. But also urge him to do everything in his power to block the proposed DGR targeted at Bruce for the burial of TransCanada's radioactive wastes on the Great Lakes shoreline!
And when you contact your U.S. Senators and Representative to urge them to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline, please also urge them to lend their support to congressional resolutions opposing Canada's Great Lakes nuclear dump.