Both of these questions have to be answered with more than yes or no. With respect to storage, I think our goal should be to implement the NWMO’s suggestion to build a deep geological repository for the long term internment of spent nuclear bundles. It is important to remember than CANDU reactors use solid state fuel that is neither gaseous or combustible under normal conditions. While reinforced concrete holding areas are a good interim solution, I would be more inclined to encourage OPG and Bruce Power to expedite construction of a permanent repository.

With regards to decommissioning Pickering Nuclear, this process will take decades. Removing the spent and in-use fuel alone is going to be a drawn out process, especially considering the security that will be required to move that quality of high-grade material. The various turbines, pipes and tubing, pumps etc that make up the internals of the plant will be radioactive and will require specialized equipment to safely disassemble and remove without endangering public health. The eventual dismantling of the buildings and remediation of the ground will not happen until all potentially hazardous materials are gone from the site. I don’t expect this to happen quickly. I am in favour however, or beginning the decommissioning process immediately once the plant’s CNSC Certificate expires in 2028. I don’t see, however, how we can safely complete this process by 2035 as you’ve suggested.