New Manager and New Fights for Cancer Society

March 15, 2009

The Lloydminster Canadian Cancer Society is taking an unprecedented stand against a possible nuclear power facility near Paradise Hill.

Although the Saskatchewan government recently issued a release encouraging Bruce Power to continue laying groundwork for a possible facility in northwest Saskatchewan, the Canadian Cancer Society Lloydminster unit has developed a policy to educate the public about the health risks associated with nuclear facilities.

"The start is to educate people about it before they can make a decision on it -- and people can voice their opinions," said Wendy Clague, new manager of the Society¹s Lloydminster unit.

The policy is the first of its kind for the Cancer Society in Canada.

"I spoke today with the division in regards to this policy," she said. "At this point, the national Canadian Cancer Society doesn¹t have policy right now on this issue. However, with a unit such as Lloydminster to bring it up to the division, the division will have to go forward to the national level."

Increased cancer risk has been associated with nuclear power facilities in some studies -- a fact that made some at the meeting uneasy.

"We know there are many benefits to nuclear power, but we also know that nuclear facilities create many situations that affect the human health, plant life and the earth itself," said Don Retzlaff, a guest at the Canadian Cancer Society Lloydminster unit annual general meeting. "There has been a considerable amount of research in the United States and Europe that indicated that nuclear power plants can create serious health problems."

Retzlaff said statistics in United States and Europe have indicated a sharp increase in breast cancer, lung cancer, liver cancer and pancreatic cancer, particularly in women and children.

"In Germany and Ireland, women and children living within 50 kilometres of a nuclear facility have a one in six chance of developing leukemia," said Retzlaff.

In October, a group of six city officials from Lloydminster, along with representatives from North Battleford and Prince Albert, toured a Bruce Power facility in Ontario.

"I think we have the responsibility as council, to be able to have all the information that we can get and get it compiled to the community knows what¹s going on," said Mayor Ken Baker


"Clarification from Cancer Society"

Posted March 17, 2009 - in Opinion / Letters to the Editor

As previously reported in the Meridian Booster, the Lloydminster Canadian Cancer Society has not developed a policy against a possible Bruce Power nuclear facility in the Lloydminster region, but want the public to be educated.

"Potential cancer risk from energy sources such as nuclear plants or coal-fired plants is a complex issue," said the Canadian Cancer Society.

We believe in a community's right to know and we encourage open discussion with the community and other involved parties during all phases of any proposed new nuclear plant.

"In general, where cancer risk is elevated, the Society believes that proactive and prudent steps should be taken to reduce risk to the lowest possible level."

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