Pickering: Time to Shut It Down

In May last year the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) held a hearing into Ontario Power Generation’s request for a further 5-year license, to run the Pickering reactors beyond their “design life” of 210,000 hours. While there was tremendous opposition & an incredible amount of negative testimony brought forward in the 3-day hearing, CNSC did grant OPG the 5-year license, but with a “hold point” one year in, to present its full safety case for continuing to run the reactors.

DNA had hired Fairewinds Associates Chief Engineer Arnie Gundersen to study OPG’s proposal & present his findings at the May 2013 hearing.

His full submission can be found here.

You can also watch a 3-minute interview with Mr. Gundersen. It’s a succinct summary of why it would be a big mistake to run the Pickering Nuclear Generator Station (PNGS) beyond its design life.

Another hugely important element of the case against Pickering is the lack of adequate emergency & evacuation plans, should there be an accident involving a large radiation release.

A 2-minute interview with the Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA)’s director Theresa McClenaghan speaks to this. (Her full presentation can be found here )

On May 7th 2014, CNSC will hold a 1-day hearing in Ottawa (accepting written submissions only this time) to review submissions on the OPG proposal to keep the PNGS going for at least 4 more years.

This site has plenty of information on how to take part in the hearing. Please do!

In January 2013 Thierry Vandal, the head of Hydro-Quebec, said when asked if he would run the Gentilly-2 nuclear station beyond its design life, “I would no more operate Gentilly-2 beyond 210,000 hours than I would climb onto an airplane that does not have its permits and that does not meet the standards. So, it is out of question to put anyone, i.e., us, the workers, the public, and the company, in a situation of risk in the nuclear realm.”

Why continue to endanger the cities & citizens of Pickering & Toronto & the entire Greater Toronto Area?

It's time to shut down Pickering.