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Liberals 'deceptive' about nuclear plans, NDP says

CBC News: March 13, 2008

The NDP is charging that the McGuinty government is not being honest about the amount of nuclear power it's planning for Ontario.

A document outlining the process for companies to bid on new reactor construction says the province may need nearly four times the nuclear power previously suggested.

The government's power plan says the province needs a minimum of 1,400 megawatts of new nuclear power. But it's asking the companies competing for the contracts to bid on a project creating much more than that.

Howard Hampton says the government has been deceptive about its electricity plans. The NDP leader says the document cites the need for up to 3,500 megawatts, with options for one or two more reactors.

"Four nuclear plants bigger than Darlington, Pickering A and Pickering B, it's huge," said Hampton.

Sean-Patrick Stensil of Greenpeace agrees.

"The McGuinty government's nuclear plan is the biggest nuclear construction program in the world; meanwhile they don't tell Ontarians this," said Stensil.

"I think the government has been downplaying the number of reactors it actually wanted to build to avoid public scrutiny of their plans," he said.

Alan Findlay, spokesman for the Ministry of Energy, denies the accusations and says the government's been transparent with its energy plans.

Findlay said the extra capacity results from new reactor designs, which are bigger, and it's more efficient to build the reactors in pairs.

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