Canada is the world's largest exporter of uranium and operates nuclear reactors including on the Great Lakes. Attempts are underway to introduce nuclear power to the province of Alberta and to use nuclear reactors to power oil extraction from the tar sands.



Another major delay on Canada's Great Lakes shoreline radioactive waste dump proposal is announced

As announced to Interested Parties, by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency's (CEAA) Deep Geologic Repository (DGR) Project Team, another major delay has just been announced regarding Ontario Power Generation's (OPG) proposal to dump radioactive waste on the Great Lakes shoreline.

This time, the Minister of the Environment and Climate, Catherine McKenna, has announced an open ended request for additional information to OPG, to accommodate the wishes of the Saugeen Ojibwe Nation (SON) to conduct a community-driven, better informed decision-making process regarding OPG's proposal to dump radioactive waste very near their reservation, on their traditional territories, adjacent to the Great Lakes, their drinking water supply, as well as the habitat for their fisheries.

The SON also have the dubious distinction of "hosting" the largest nuclear power plant on Earth, the Bruce Nuclear Generating Station (BNGS). Its eight operable reactors (and a ninth prototype, long shut down) make it larger than any other nuclear power plant in the world, by number of reactors. Not that the SON were asked for their consent, decades ago, for the construction and operation of the BNGS.

BNGS is also the location of the Western Waste Management Facility (WWMF), which not only stores Bruce's radioactive wastes, but also those imported in from a dozen reactors east of Toronto, from the Pickering (eight reactors) and Darlington (four reactors) nuclear power plants on the shore of Lake Ontario.

All of Ontario's combusitble "low-level" radioactive wastes are even incinerated at the WWMF, with untold radioactivity releases to the air, which then fallout on the surrounding countryside, as well as Lake Huron surface waters. It would be the "low-level" radioactive waste ashes left over from the incineration process, as well as non-combustible "low-level" radioactive wastes, and highly radioactive "intermediate-level" radioactive wastes, that would be buried at the DGR, if OPG gets it way -- 400,000 cubic meters worth!

After the open ended request for additional information is concluded, and OPG submits the additional information to the CEAA, the CEAA will then write a draft summary report for the consideration of the Environment and Climate Mininster. There will also be a public comment opportunity at that time on the conditions proposed for the DUD (Deep Underground Dump, an appropriately sarcastic acronym coined by the late, great Dave Martin of Greenpeace Canada). None of these dates have yet been announced -- this most recent delay is currently open ended.

Beyond Nuclear has been an official party in the licensing proceeding since its founding in 2007. Beyond Nuclear's radioactive waste watchdog, Kevin Kamps, fought the DUD before that, dating back to 2001, when the DUD was first proposed, in his capacity as nuclear waste specialist at NIRS, as well as board member of Don't Waste MI, at that time.

Before this most recent (there have been multiple earlier ones!) postponement announcement, a draft summary report was due any day now (by late summer) from CEAA, for the Minister's consideration. A time period had also been scheduled for members of the public, interested parties, and official parties, to make comment on the draft summary report. The Minister was set to maker her up or down decision re: the DUD this autumn. But now this has all been indefinitely delayed.

Opponents of the DUD had previously protested the fact that OPG's most recent submission of additional information to CEAA had not been accompanied with a public comment period, for CEAA to consider the public's views, as it prepared its latest summary update status report on the additional information submitted by OPG.

And as Beverly Fernandez of the organization Stop the Great Lakes Nuclear Dump asked in Feb. 2016, why is the Environment and Climate Minister, as well as the CEAA, delaying their decision on the DGR (Deep Geologic Repository)? Why aren't the Minister and CEAA rejecting OPG's application outright?

Given how unacceptable and insane this scheme is, including how woefully inadequate the construction and operating license application has clearly been (given all the requests for additional information since the Justin Trudeau government was elected), Stop the Great Lakes Nuclear Dump's question is a powerful one!


Beyond Nuclear speaks at Great Lakes Environmental Alliance rally opposing DGR!

On Sunday, August 20th, Beyond Nuclear's Kevin Kamps was honored and privileged to present at a rally organized by the Great Lakes Environmental Alliance (GLEA), in Port Huron, Michigan. Port Huron is where the freshwater inland sea, Lake Huron, flows into the St. Clair River, carrying the drinking water supply for tens of millions of people downstream to such surface waters as Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, and the St. Lawrence River. Port Huron is connected to Sarnia, Ontario via the Blue Water Bridge, within eyesight of which the rally was held. The rally was held during the annual St. Clair River Float Down, so thousands of people on floatation devices passed by the rally, and saw it in progress!

See Beyond Nuclear's August 15th announcement, below, sent far and wide to allies throughout the Great Lakes and beyond, for more information on this 3rd Annual Rally to Protect the Great Lakes.


3rd Annual International Rally to Protect the Great Lakes, Port Huron, MI, Sun., Aug. 20, 11am-5pm

Dear All,
I hope you can come, but if you cannot, please spread word to others who may be able to. And please be informed, and inspired, that the resistance to OPG's DGR continues in Michigan, after more than a decade and a half!

Jeremy Whitmore from the board of Great Lakes Environmental Alliance (GLEA) has invited me to come and speak about the ongoing resistance to Ontario Power Generation's proposed "Deep Geologic Repository" (DGR, or DUD-Deep Underground Dump) for radioactive waste, targeted at the Lake Huron shore, at the Bruce Nuclear Generating Station in Kincardine, Ontario, Canada. Jeremy has also asked me to address additional radioactive waste storage and transportation risks impacting the Great Lakes, and to set up our Beyond Nuclear info. table. See the text of the GLEA flier below, as well as links to the flier itself in both PDF and JPG formats. The event will take place on the banks of the St. Clair River during the annual Port Huron Float Down event, just like the first annual Rally to Protect the Great Lakes in 2015. Please come if you can, spread the word if you can't, and help us nip the DUD in the bud in the months ahead!

And here is the link to the Facebook event page for the 3rd Annual International Rally to the Protect the Great Lakes in Port Huron, MI next Sunday.
---Kevin Kamps, Beyond Nuclear

P.S. For more info. about the DUD, and other important issues, please see the following links for starters: Stop the Great Lakes Nuclear Dump; S.O.S. (Save Our Shores) Great Lakes; Beyond Nuclear Canada website section; GLEA website.

[Text from flier sent by Jeremy Whitmore]

3rd Annual International Rally to Protect the Great Lakes

Pinegrove Park's Bandshell

Port Huron, MI

[Sunday] August 20, 2017


Environmental problems & solutions that we face in the Great Lakes

[Speakers:] Kevin Kamps, Joshua Radhs, Venessa Davis, Danielle Williams, Brad Kallio

& musical guest Victor McManemy

[Sponsored by:] Great Lakes Environmental Alliance, Beyond Nuclear

[Links to Great Lakes Environmental Alliance's really cool event flier: in PDF format; in JPG format]


Charting Canada’s troubled waters: Where the danger lies for watersheds across the country: Ivan Semeniuk

As posted at SOS Great Lakes:

A national assessment of Canada's freshwater ecosystems has found that each of our 25 watersheds is facing environmental threats.

Out of 167 sub-watersheds 31% exhibit high levels of stress and 66% are data deficient.

The absence of a standardized national water monitoring program has left Canada unprepared to address increasing pressures on freshwater ecosystems.

“Water – despite its theoretical abundance – is probably the biggest looming problem in Canada,” said David Schindler, one of Canada’s most highly regarded freshwater scientists.

The article reports:

The assessment finds that the data are too deficient in 110 out of the 167 subwatersheds to form a baseline picture of ecosystem health, including in some relatively populated areas where freshwater is essential to communities, such as in southern Manitoba, Nova Scotia's Annapolis Valley or the Bruce region of Ontario. (emphasis added)

The Bruce region of Ontario hosts the world's largest nuclear power plant, by number of reactors: Bruce Nuclear Generating Station (BNGS), with eight operable reactors, and a ninth permanently shutdown prototype. The eight Bruce reactors lack cooling towers, discharging their massive amounts of waste heat directly into Lake Huron. Their CANDU reactor design is also an infamous generator and emitter of radioactive hydrogen (tritium), both to air and water, impacting the adjacent Lake Huron.

BNGS's "Western Waste Management Facility" has served for four decades as a concentration location for all of Ontario's "low" and "intermediate" level radioactive wastes, including from another dozen reactors east of Toronto at Pickering and Darlington nuclear power plants. Much to all of the combustible "low" level radioactive wastes have even been incinerated at Bruce, with untold atmospheric emissions of tritium and other volatile radioactive hazards, including fallout on Lake Huron.

Since 2001, Ontario Power Generation, owner of the province's 20 atomic reactors, has also targeted BNGS for a shoreline "low" and "intermediate" level radioactive waste dump.

Three Ontario municipalities near BNGS are still in the running for Canada's high-level radioactive waste dump as well, with fear that the "low" and "intermediate" level radioactive waste dump could expand to include high-level radioactive waste as well.

Lake Huron is central to the Great Lakes -- 21% of the world's surface fresh water, and 84% of North America's -- both geographically, and figurately. The Great Lakes are the drinking water supply for 40 million people in eight U.S. states, two Canadian provinces, and a large number of Native American First Nations.

See the full Globe and Mail article.


Great Lakes delegates to Tillerson: Oppose Canadian N-waste burial plan

As posted at SOS Great Lakes:

32 members of Congress from the Great Lakes region have sent a letter to the Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, asking that he block plans for permanent storage of radioactive waste near Lake Huron.

The letter states: "Any contamination whatsoever would pose disastrous repercussions as all of the lakes are connected to one another, and no barrier, man-made or natural, would be able to stop a potential catastrophe of epic proportions."

See the Buffalo News article.