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Candidates blast Liberal nuclear waste policy

Windsor Star: Chris Thompson - September 26, 2007

Windsor neighbourhoods could be adversely affected if a so-called Liberal plan for storing nuclear waste in the city goes ahead, two local NDP candidates said Wednesday.

"It is outrageous that nuclear waste could be stored in Windsor due to our McGuinty Liberal cabinet ministers," said Windsor West NDP candidate Mariano Klimowicz outside the closing Ford Casting Plant, a site they said could be used to store nuclear waste.

"It is a scandal that there has been no public discussions or consultations about the dangers to the health and safety of the residents of this community."

Klimowicz said the broken Liberal promise to do away with coal-fired generating plants and reduce the province's dependence on nuclear energy, only to now be contemplating more nuclear generation, means there will be more spent nuclear waste requiring storage.

A report by the Nuclear Waste Management Organization entitled "Choosing a Way Forward" was released earlier this year and identified Windsor as a possible future nuclear waste storage site, along with Stratford, Toronto and Muskoka.

"We don't want to house a nuclear waste site," said Klimowicz.

"This is the kind of facility that needs to be running manufacturing jobs."

Windsor-Tecumseh MPP and Energy Minister Dwight Duncan called the candidate's claims "pathetic."

"First of all, nuclear waste management is a federal issue," said Duncan.

"Second of all, there are sites in Ontario, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, and Quebec that are all potential sites because of the geology."

Duncan also said only "willing host municipalities" will be used and any construction will not take place for 60 years.

"To come out with something so lacking in accuracy is quite sad," said Duncan.

"It strikes me as desperate posturing by mister whatever-his-name is."

Windsor-Tecumseh NDP candidate Helmi Charif said the Liberals need to be clear on what is going to happen.

"Who knows how much radioactive material is bound for Windsor?," Charif said.

"It is an environmental disaster just waiting to happen in the case of a leak."

Charif said Muskoka is unlikely to become a nuclear dump site.

"If anyone thinks cottage country is going to be a nuclear wate site, they are dreaming," said Charif.

"This situation is just like the fight for a tunnel to the new border crossing. Duncan and Pupatello are silent at first then insist upon a cheap, dangerous, and unwanted Liberal plan. It this city going to have to hire experts and spend millions of dollars fighting the province, like we do for the tunnel, to prevent Windsor from a radioactive dump due to cheap McGuinty Liberal ideas."

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