November 12, 2012
Nuclear waste disposal up for debate in northern Ontario
MP hosting meetings across region to shed more light on plans to store nuclear waste in north
A northern Ontario MP is holding a series of town hall meetings about the possible transportation and disposal of nuclear waste in northern Ontario to make sure everybody knows what the project entails.
Blind River, Elliot Lake, Spanish and the Township of the North Shore have all passed initial screenings in the search to find a home for Canada’s first nuclear waste disposal site. But Thunder Bay-Superior North MP Bruce Hyer said he’s concerned the project hasn’t been discussed enough in communities that might be close to the transportation corridors used to move the waste.
"While I feel the Nuclear Waste Management Organization has done a pretty good job of consulting with the towns that actually think they might like the repository, they have not done an adequate job at all of consulting with the wider community,” Hyer said.
He’s looking to move that discussion further along through a series of town hall meetings.
"Deferring the discussion with the communities along the likely transportation routes is not a good idea. It’s my contention that not just a few small towns [should] decide whether this waste comes to northern Ontario."
If it’s approved, more than 600 shipments of nuclear waste would be transported annually to the new long-term disposal site.
A spokesperson with the NWMO said communities on the transportation routes will be consulted, but that won’t happen for another five years, when the current assessment stage is over.
Michael Krizanc said it will still be at least another decade before the location for the nuclear disposal site is chosen.
On Monday night, Hyer will hold a town hall meeting in Sudbury at St. Andrew’s Place on Larch Street from 7-9 p.m. Another meeting will take place in Sault Ste. Marie on Nov. 13.
Hyer said he will hold a number of other town hall meetings in northwestern Ontario over the next few weeks. So far, Hyer has held townhall meetings in Oshawa and Parry Sound.