Magazine article New Internationalist

Safety Commission Approves Radioactive Shipment

Magazine article New Internationalist

Safety Commission Approves Radioactive Shipment

Article excerpt

Canadian nuclear energy giant Bruce Power will ship 16 radioactive steam generators through the Great Lakes and St Lawrence River to Sweden. Forty million people depend on the Great Lakes for drinking water and one spill could have serious repercussions on people's health. Once the generators reach Sweden they will be decontaminated, broken apart and recycled.

Previously Bruce Power had decided that radioactive levels in the generators were too high to safely recycle and had agreed to store them on-site indefinitely. Then last April, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) overruled its own Packaging and Transport of Nuclear Substances Regulations and created a special licence for Bruce Power.

André Régimbald, Director General oftheCNSC's Nuclear Substances Regulation division says, 'The environmental and human health risk from an accident would be negligible.' Others are sceptical. A study by the Great Lakes and St Lawrence Cities Initiative (a bi-national coalition of mayors and local officials) concluded that an accident involving one steam generator near Owen Sound, Ontario would increase radioactivity in the water by more than six times Health Canada's drinking water guidelines. …

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