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Nanticoke eyed as site for nuclear power plant - Approval process could take at least 5 years

TheStar.com: Tyler Hamilton - Oct 31, 2008

http://www.thestar.com/article/527939

Nuclear power-plant operator Bruce Power will signal to Queen's Park and the federal regulator today that it intends to build a new nuclear plant in the small community of Nanticoke, next to the massive coal-fired generating station that's slated for shutdown in 2014, the Star has learned.

Duncan Hawthorne, president and chief executive officer of Bruce Power, is expected to announce at an event near Nanticoke, along the north shore of Lake Erie, that his company is seeking a site preparation licence from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

The application would start an approvals process likely to take five years before construction can begin. "I can't provide you with any details at this time," said company spokesperson Steve Cannon.

There's no guarantee such a plant will get built. The Ministry of Energy recently selected Darlington as the site of the province's newest nuclear plant in 20 years, to be operated by Ontario Power Generation.

Bruce Power lost its bid to construct and operate that first plant next to its existing facilities near Kincardine. Sources say Hawthorne is betting that the province will need more reactors.

Energy and Infrastructure Minister George Smitherman could not be reached for comment.

Industry experts say Nanticoke is considered an ideal site for a nuclear plant because of its location, lakeside access and ample access to high-voltage transmission lines.

The community is also used to having a power plant in its backyard and is worried about the loss of 600 jobs after the coal plant is shut down though there would likely be a five-year gap between the shutdown of the coal plant and the first operation of a nuclear plant.

Hawthorne has spent two years courting the small communities in the region. In February, Norfolk and Haldimand counties sent letters to Premier Dalton McGuinty asking for the go-ahead to file for a site application, which triggers an environmental assessment.

Some area residents are cool to the idea of a nuclear plant. "Just because our mayor think it's a good idea doesn't mean the community members do as well," Victoria Smith, 24, told the Star. "I can assure you that's not the case."

COMMENTS: Friday, October 31 2008

We don't Need More Nuclear; Grant Church, Haldimand County, we don't need any more of the baseload power that nuclear provides. The price of power has already gone negative for at least 15 hours this year. Bruce Power even had to throttle back two generators in early July, because of a lack of demand. Haldimand residents have had sucess in putting an end to dump proposals and we will surely put an end to a nuclear waste dump, which a nuclear plant is.

what?? How is nuclear in any way cleaner? In the fact that it doesn't create air pollution yes, but what about the radioactive waste it produces in tons?? This waste needs to be stored for 10,000 years before it's no longer a threat. So, we will run out of places to store this crap and no storage system is perfect. I wonder if the people screaming "nuclear is clean" will volunteer to live above a radioactive dumping ground....

In the dark, Nuclear can't replace coal. Even Duncan Hawthorne has said this publicly. Nuclear is baseload and whereas coal is both baseload and load following. Ontario's experience with nuclear has been far from stellar. They fail just when you need them, without warning, and at huge cost. Given the neglect of the coal plants, they have performed well and have kept the lights on. We should be figuring out how to make these cleaner. If not, we will be even more reliant on dirty imported power on days when the nukes croak.

Nuclear is the answer, There is no known technology that can produce as much energy as cleanly as nuclear. I'm glad our province is making the bold decisions today that will allow us to have a stable energy future. And before the wind activists get on me, google "baseload" and understand that wind is not the answer to our energy requirements... or realize that a single turbine can only power 250 homes, when it's spinning at full speed... it's a pipe dream.

I smell a nuclear rat, By the time this new nuclear plant is finished there will be the new technology of tapping into the almost limitless energy source deep in the earth,which seems to be easiest to extract in areas of volcanoes.Iceland seems to exploit these energy sources already as well as some areas of the US and this leaves no carbon footprint.Just like coal now proves not to be an acceptable source of energy,neither is nuclear because of its spent fuel,that has to be safely stored for thousands of years.There needs to be far more emphasis on wind and solar energy as well as on conservation.Business and industry have hardly changed their wasteful ways.Somehow I seem to smell a nuclear rat in this story.

Beware! Nuclear power is a good thing, but it should not be in private hands. Bring back Ontario Hydro!

Nuclear at Nanticoke is Needed, Ontario needs reliable low cost electricity generation to regain an economic base. Electrification of transport (cars and trains) will need much more electricity. The Nanticoke site is ideal as near the load centre (GTA / Southwest). A wind / gas mix planned for Ontario will be unreliable, costly, and environmentally unfriendly. Burning gas in single-cycle gas turbines to generate electricity uses less than half of its energy. Also, gas supplies are short - and getting shorter. Costs will soar. Nuclear can be a good replacement for coal. Yes, please.

Another time bomb, Who is running the show, the nuke generals or the people?

I live there and welcome the plant, Nuclear is safe! We need to keep the OPG jobs here. Air quality will improve, construction will bring jobs with many skill positions remaining, this area will grow and Ontario will be better off as a whole

Get the facts! It would be a great idea for those mayors from Norfolk and Haldimand and Hamilton Council to watch the facts coming out on new build reactors in the Environmental Assessment on Duncan Hawthorne's proposal to add new reactors to the Tiverton plant, which is now underway. This is the first time ever that nuclear energy generation and its effects on human health and the environment is coming under a microscope. It will be a rough awakening about so-called clean nuclear power!!

To be environmentally friendly, before all the grass eaters line up against this, I wonder how many of them would like to live in Tee-pees and get up and hunt for breakfast. To be green really we have to go back 300 hundred years. I am really sick of people and there protest careers, get a life and a real job.

Good News, this is great news for the area. A new plant would create well-paying jobs, support small business development and ensure a reliable and safe source of power for the future.

Wrong Move; Instead, we should be putting this money into the development and construction of alternative forms of power generation, like wind and solar, which come with no lasting input costs, nor any harmful waste. The money saved on input could go directly into the research of more efficient technological solutions. Germany is decommissioning nuclear plants and replacing them with 'green' technologies. Why the sudden rush to step back in time here in Canada?

CANDU 6 Technology; Any new build nuclear plant from here on out will use enriched fuel. The CANDU 6 style reactors currently in service in Ontario can no longer be built as a result of CNSC changes to liscence requirements. These recent changes stipulate that any new build reactor design must have a negative void coefficient. The Advanced CANDU Reactor (ACR) that is currently being designed by AECL will use enriched fuel just like existing PWR and BWR designs (lower enrichment but enrichment nonetheless). The advantage of building one of these other designs (most likely a PWR) is that it is a proven technology whereas no one has ever built or demonstrated the operability of an ACR.

Hot Potato; My bet is that they do not plan to go with AECL technology. This will prove to be either a political hot potato or a blessing and AECL will be sold off in a two birds - one stone arrangement. Buy the company, get the contract.

Bruce Power... Ultimate Money Eater; Right. So they go 300 million over budget on one outage, and we consider giving him another plant? This is a private company being funded by public money, and there is no one to keep them in check.

Nuclear !! Do you realize the 3 mile island accident has killed thousand of people over the years!! Not by the accident itself, but by the US not building a single new nuclear plant since then. Instead they built coal fired plants, which kill people with the pollution they spew into the air. Nuclear is the only real way to produce clean energy, you can't run a country with a windmill. Nuclear technology can now deplete the fuel bundles to the point were they are extremely safe, unlike to old problems of storage, which if I'm mistaken has never been a problem anyway.

RE: Nuclear is the answer; Its amazing how folks can listen to the NUCLEAR LOBBY and blindly repeat that nuclear is clean energy that has a zero footprint and does not generate any emissions. Do you realize the amount of emissions that are generated from uranium extraction (yes nuclear uses a fuel that is mined from the ground). Do you also realize the amount of emissions that are generated while shipping that dangerous fuel across the country. Building of the nuclear plant generates emissions and how do you address the life cycle of uranium. With the several billion dollars pledged to build these reactors, you can invest in renewable energy and conservation and rewards for Ontario would immense. Germany has a much larger economy and they are phasing nuclear out and with conservation, California has not had to build a new plant in like 30 years. There economy continues to grow, but their energy requirements do not. think about it.

Come to the light; The problems you describe with nuclear relate to old technologies which would not be built today. Coal can be made better with clean coal technologies, but it's still a lot dirtier than nuclear or wind.

Just part of the solution; Geothermal is a great resource in certain places, but in places with no source close to the surface, i.e. Ontario, it's not a realistic option. There is not single answer. Wind, geothermal have great potential where they can be implemented effectively. Solar has a long way to go before it will be a practical option for significant energy production. Everything I've read on current nuclear technology indicates that it has great potential with much, much less risk than previous generations of technology. The biggest problem is that every option has people complaining about it. We have to take a realistic approach, accept that nothing is perfect, and look for the best option. One of those is probably nuclear.

Well, that's a no-brainer; That so obvious a step should arouse controversy is beyond me. The real question is will we adopt Candu6 technology or once again abandon our own and go with foreign designs, all of which, unlike the Candu, require enriched uranium, thereby putting our fuel cycle in foreign hands until we develop our own enrichment facilities. Perhaps we could ask Iran for help.

We can use less; We can use far less energy and not suffer any loss of quality of life. In fact, saving energy can improve ones quality of life. Its fairly easy to reduce energy use in a home (and utility bills) by up to half with some investment in upgrades. This can often make a home more comfortable and healthy. We can choose to live closer to work and drive less and spend less on gas. We can choose to live a less consumptive lifestyle. This does not mean living in teepees as one person put it on this forum. I have a beautiful home, am in great shape because I walk and bike and have plenty of free time and energy for fulfilling activities because of my habits. Some of my friends and family say its hard to change. Nuclear power is the easy way out because its stealing a non-irradiated earth from future generations.

Nuclear is highly toxic; Nuclear power is the number 1 choice of an extremely selfish, ignorant society. The waste from nuclear plants (including the plants themselves) is highly toxic for tens if not hundreds of thousands of years. It is not emissions free as some lie that it is. During operations, there are regular routine emissions of tritium and other harmful radioactive waste along with tons of heavy metals and other pollutants (in our case) into the biggest fresh water source in the world, making it less drinkable / able to sustain life. Climate change and a wasteful society are problematic but not so much as our use of nuclear power. Its easier to sequester (and for the biosphere to absorb) carbon than it is radioactive waste.

Next up .. Breeders and Reprocessing; Ontario's nuclear waste could be further reduced with Breeder reactors and reprocessing plants - sure we 'could' make Nuclear weapons, but we haven't nor do we have the need to do so - so lets throw off that peace-nip thinking and get more 'green' with our nuclear waste.

Candu 6 /ACR; @ nuclear_worker I am not an expert in reactor design, so I accept your rebuke. Nonetheless, to me it is important that we maintain control over the fuel cycle. If this should mean that the Crown should create an enrichment plant, fine, no problem. But the likes of Enron, well, no, I would rather not. Cheers, dba

PRIVATE AND NOT CANDU; its a great idea for jobs, but should not we be conserving instead of building these massice white elephants. And we have excessive power, so why more. another point we should think about other designs of the world which are in use and please a big no to the managers who are running the provincial nukes now. Its proven time and again they cant run it while the bruce guy can.

Nuclear yes; Private no, just one more rip off, this privatize everything mantra has been proven a bust except for those at the top.

Nuclear is the way to go for now; We need a stop gap between fossil fuels and future green energy. This stop gap is nuclear power. There is no need to fear nuclear reactors, the threat of nuclear weapons is much greater no matter where you live! Even if your house was built between 1000 reactors, the greater risk is all those tens of thousands of ICBMs that are still on hair trigger alert cold war or no cold war.

Nukes are the way; They are much cleaner and more efficient than other methods of generating power. I feel we need more nuclear generating plants until we can develop the next means of generating power. Wind and Solar are OK, but too costly and not as efficient. I don't like the idea of burning coal or other fossil fuels due to the air quality concerns they create.

Let's think futurely; 1. We cannot conserve our way out of our need for more power. The population continues to grow. Industry over the long haul continues to expand, as does commercial activity of all kinds. So conserve, but also grow the generation capacity. 2. When we all have smart metres and off-peak pricing incentives as well as electric cars that we charge overnight, the advantage of coal over nuclear as load following as well as baseload is diminished. We can also make better 24-hour use of wind and hydro. 3. Last but not least, solar and solar power storage will see a big breakthrough in efficiency and price, which should help with peak day generation, and get us around grid constraints, but it will take a generation to effect such a profound re-engineering. So we need energy capacity that will get us to that point.

Tell the whole story; Germany is building new coal plants and is rethinking their nuclear opposition as their wind turbines just do not produce suffient power to replace any baseload sources. California is also not an energy model to follow. You didn't mention that France relies upon nuclear for 80% of their generation has the cleanest air and cheapest electricity in Europe.

Great News; This fantastic news for my local community-so much spin-off. We need the power-people are not disconnecting from the grid. Wind and solar farms use gas turbine back up to fulfil contracts. BTW the dirty air around us is not from Nanticoke, but from plants in the Ohio Valley.

Lake Erie?; With Lake Erie getting warmer every year, is it wise to add a nuclear plant to its shore? You would think the water cooling needs of a nuclear plant would make a bad situation worse.

Projections off? With the demise of so much manufacturing in Ontario, the demand for power is dropping not growing. Are the projections for electricity just a tad unrealistic? Do we really need more power?

Nuclear is Safe; Natural Uranium is Radioactive for millions of years. After it comes out of a reactor it has a much shorter half life and can be recycled as the French do. Canada Runs safe plants and BP is no exception, their site is like a nature preserve and their enviromental efforts are nothing short of overboard.

Dangerous, hazerdous, - Blah, blah blah; I think rational perspective and context is needed. A parked car is relatively harmless. At 100kph its certainly very dangerous and it becomes a matter of who's driving and the road conditions. Yes, nuclear power isn't magical without compromises. The intense reaction leaves used fuel still hot (ie beta decay). But it cools down exponentionally, is all accounted for and continuously closely monitored and uses thousands times less space than coal or oil. Often people quote thousands or millions of years to make it safe. Unfortunately, even if all used nuclear fuel were to turn to lead, it would still be toxic, and requires careful handling. But this is the price we pay for the luxuries of modern technology (electronics medicine etc). Its just surprising that after recent propane explosion folks haven't started protesting that all propane use be banned.. but its common to cry foul nuclear should be banned when it has possibly the best safety record of any industry.

Fabulous idea; I just read in a news release that Bruce Power is going to work with a couple of Ontario universities to create a clean energy hub at Nanticoke : nuclear, hydrogen, wind and solar. This will produce thousands of jobs for the area. Nice to have some good news for a change.

Nuclear Waste; Looks like some people like scorpius-U8 need to look a little further for their knowledge on nuclear waste. To get the proper perspective on the dangers of the 'spent fuel' they should read the report from the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), a federal government agency : "Choosing a Way Forward" www.nwmo.ca The Appendix has all the statistics,compiled by the experts.

Surplus Generation ... There once was a time when Ontario as policy would EXPORT our nuclear generated power to the States. This had benefits as we profited selling it (higher rates to the US) and by adding juice to the Eastern Grid, we kept the big coal plants in Penn. from running full out - better for everyone. If we build lots of reactors up here and export - we will re-coupe the costs quicker and should the Liberals ever get in with their Green Shift, Ontario will get carbon credits out the wazoo - until Al Gore figures out a way to re-balance the equations to make him and Man-Bear-Pig more rich.

Bruce over budget .. Why? Because retro-fitting a power plant with thousands of control wires, with blueprints that are decades old, and with discoveries that things weren't completely documented. Remember that some of these plants suffered political interference, stop and restart, union strikes, etc. If these plants would of been built in one shot without all the government interference then the job would be faster. Also CANDU designs are superior to 3 Mile Island - so its a non-issue. Also reliability? The nuclear plants are well maintained, it just happened that an overhaul was required and taking a little bit longer - I trust the engineers to do the job right, a couple of million extra sucks but I'd rather have quality before speed.

Clean Coal and a Nuke mix; Coal power plants with strong pollution controls like stack scrubbers must be part of our power mix with nuclear and wind. The natural gas power plants should never have been built as natural gas should have been used only for transportation and homes. Now that CO2 has been shown to have almost no effect on climate change, clean coal should be back on the table as a power source. 1998 to 2008 has seen world temperatures drop while CO2 has risen in a linear fashion. Global warming has reversed: http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/fullcomment/archive/2008/10/20/lorne-gunter-thirty-years-of-warmer-temperatures-go-poof.aspx?CommentPosted=true#commentmessage

Uranium vs coal; I'm by no means an expert but you have to mine and ship coal just the same as you would have to do with uranium. Whole mountains are being destroyed in the States with open top coal mining techniques. The total energy that a given quantity of uranium provides is far more than that of a similar quantity of coal. Further, with uraninum you eliminate the emmissions from buring the coal. The waste urainium can be safely stored and porssibly even reused in the future. By the way, natural uranium is not dangerous - you can hold a new fuel bundle in your bare hands before it is placed in the reactor.

Geothermal; Most of the information about geothermal comes out of the U.S. They mostly do conventional geothermal there and enhanced geothermal is considered too expensive, but their comparison is still to cheap coal. When compared to the price of nuclear, EGS becomes a reasonable alternative. Yes, you have to drill deeper but an MIT study points out that the oil/gas industry has gained the expertise at deep drilling required to make it practical. The main depth limitation seems to be where the drill bit gets too hot which is just where you want to be for EGS. Nuclear is fine but leave the radioactive material safely underground and drill down to get only its heat.

Re: Projections off? To peterw's point, while I agree that manufacturing is slowing in Ontario, it does not take away from the fact that we will not have enough power in 2014, when they plan on shutting down all of the coal plants (which currently produces 40-50% of the province's power). The supply and demand curves are outlined clearly in the OPA's recent power planning brochure. For the people that are saying we should use wind and solar in Ontario as the SOLE supplier of energy, this solution is simply not feasible. The wind resource in Ontario is not very strong (compared to Germany, Denmark, or even Nova Scotia and Quebec for that matter) which usually translates into a lower capacity factor. This has 2 impacts: 1. It doesn't run enough to supply electricity to everyone all the time. 2. It sometimes supplies electricity when the electricity is not needed. Unless we all want to alternate sitting in the dark, we need more base load power and at this current time, nuclear is the way to go.

For those of you who think that Nuclear waste comes by the Tones, turn off the Simpson's and do some research. On fuel bundle (roughly 1 foot in length and a few inches in diameter) is the equivalent waste (what goes it to the reactor comes out) as about 400 tones of coal. Once used, it is kept under water in storage bays for about 25 years until it can be put into dry storage. I'm not going to go into detail about how dry storage works, but believe me, the radiological hazards associated with it and the storage bays to people and the environment are probably less than that which you receive standing under a power line. Also, new fuel is hardly reactive. Shipping it is not an issue. For all of you who are referring to nuclear power being so extreme and dangerous, why don't you research how much radiation you receive when you get a chest x-ray, smoke, or take your next flight. If you decide to educate yourself, you might find your thoughts to be a little less naive.

I can assure you, I live in Kincardine and only a fool would deny nuclear power ! it has lifted our economy up and given thousands of locals excellent jobs not to mention added zero carbon to to our planet. nanticoke is an eyesore and a killer, wake up people. When i throw my garbage out the window you cry and call me names ! when i neatly and safely put my garbage in a box and store it out of sight and mind you cry foul and say i am ruining the future, Apparently the republicans are not the only ones using fear as a tactic!!!! what side are you on !!!!

Glad coal is being phased out, I know nuclear isn't perfect and a little more costlier but I think it is a vast improvement over coal-fired power generation. I think with Nanticoke taken off line, and the other coal-fired generating stations, it will improve the air quality here in southern Ontario.

If you are against Nuclear, Please turn your lights, cellphone, and computers off! For if all you disconnected from the grid / life we would have the 'greenist' reliable energy source currently available. Thermal, Wind, Solar are great for supplementary reserves / export - but really - if electric cars do come - we need a lot more energy generation. The 'green' movement shows its inability to grasp with reality - just like David Suziki - the guy was wrong about Nuclear Power which led to more coal and gas power generation - brilliant man he is - NOT!

Apparently, we have short memories... Remember Chernobyl and Three Mile Island, just to name a couple...

BTW, I haven't read one comment that speaks realistically about what we are supposed to do with the huge amount of extremely dangerous radioactive waste that this plant will produce.

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