Skip to content

UPDATE: Lui builds European opposition to Great Lakes shipments

Emma Lui, Mayor Albert De Hoop

Emma Lui, Mayor Albert De Hoop

On Monday April 18, Council of Canadians water campaigner Emma Lui was in Amsterdam to meet with Mayor Albert De Hoop, President of KIMO International, and Sean Morris, Secretary for the Nuclear Free Local Authorities, who joined by telephone from Manchester, England. They were meeting to discuss ways to build a trans-Atlantic alliance to stop Bruce Power’s proposed shipments of nuclear waste on the Great Lakes, across the Atlantic Ocean, and to Sweden for processing. The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has already approved these shipments, but Bruce Power still needs approvals from the United Kingdom, Denmark and Norway to pass through their waters.

KIMO is a coalition of 160 European municipalities dedicated to giving municipalities “a political voice at the international level” and addressing marine issues. The NFLA is a coalition of 75 local governments throughout the United Kingdom.

KIMO recently sent a letter to the Swedish, Danish and English ministers requesting that they investigate the issue. In February, the Montreal Gazette reported, “A coalition of British municipalities is urging the UK government to prevent the atomic cargo from passing close to Ireland and Scotland. The Nuclear Free Local Authorities has expressed its ‘deep alarm’ that the Canadian shipment of ‘highly radioactive waste’ is expected to skirt the UK coastline en route to a Swedish recycling plant. ‘We don’t want them passing by our waters and putting our communities at risk. The waste should remain in Canada and be safely managed there,’ NFLA chair Bailie George Regan said in announcing the launch of a campaign to stop the ship from passing by.”

Friends of the Earth Scotland have also expressed concerns over the shipments, while Friends of the Earth Denmark recently issued a media release opposing the shipment. The Enhedslisten party in Denmark has raised questions concerning the shipment in the Danish Parliament. Emma has also noted in a blog that, “Organizations in Europe have expressed opposition including the Swedish Environmental Movement’s Nuclear Waste Secretariat, Green World (Russia), Naturvernforbund/Friends of the Earth (Norway) and Sortie du nucléaire (France).”

To read Emma’s report from Amsterdam, please go to http://canadians.org/waterblog/?p=210.