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NEWS: Decision on Great Lakes radioactive shipments by Dec. 22

The Toronto Star reports that, “An international coalition of environmental groups and community leaders (including the Council of Canadians) will make its final pleas to Canada’s nuclear safety regulator Monday in a last-ditch attempt to stop a controversial plan to ship radiation-laced steel through the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway.”

“The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission is deciding whether to grant Bruce Power Inc. a licence to transport 16 decommissioned steam generators weighing 1,760 tonnes by ship from the shores of Georgian Bay, through Lakes Huron, Erie and Ontario and along the St. Lawrence River to Sweden, where they are to be recycled. It would be the first time a licence has been issued by the commission to ship nuclear waste through the Great Lakes.”

The National Post adds that, “Critics say the route would set a ‘dangerous’ North American precedent as the largest shipment to travel on the Great Lakes. …Most are asking that Bruce Power provide more time and resources so they can conduct their own environmental-risk assessments.”

“The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has a month, beginning Monday, to make a decision.”

It has been speculated that the decision could be made by December 8-9, that’s when the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission will hold a public meeting. The agenda for that meeting will be posted on November 23.

It seems certain now that the shipments, if approved, could not take place until the spring.

The Owen Sound Times reported earlier this fall that it could take “as much as 22 days” to truck the 16 steam generators from the nuclear plant down a highway, through Owen Sound, then to the harbour where they would be loaded on to ships. …Bruce Power spokesperson John Peevers said, “The St. Lawrence, we’re told, is open roughly and generally until Dec. 21st based on weather and past history, so it’s something we’ll have to look at pending the decision.” Peevers said in mid-October that, “Certainly there’s the potential this may get pushed until spring but we’ll just have to continue to let the process work and we’ll make that decision once we get a decision from the CNSC.”

For previous campaign blogs on this, please go to http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?s=%22great+lakes%22+%2B+%22radioactive%22.