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Letter to Mayor Travale from local resident

Jim Elve - April 6, 2009

Dear Mayor Travale,

Thank you for taking the time to chat with our anti-nuke demonstrators at the Simcoe Recreation Centre Saturday.

You’ll recall that I asked you why Norfolk Council had made a unanimous resolution of support for the Bruce’s nuclear proposal without any public consultation. You answered that Council had not endorsed the project but had only endorsed the Environmental Assessment. I replied that Bruce was using that resolution as proof that Norfolk is a willing host community for a new nuclear plant. You replied that if that is how the resolution is being presented, it is incorrect and unwarranted.

I am able to inform you that Bruce Power is, indeed, using Norfolk’s resolution as evidence that Norfolk is a willing host for a nuclear plant. Here is an excerpt from Bruce Power’s Round One Community Information Session Report of January 2009.

Both Haldimand County and Norfolk County have indicated they were willing host communities through resolutions to the Minister of Energy favouring proceeding with an environmental assessment at this time.
(Pages 27 and 28, http://www.brucepower.com/uc/GetDocument.aspx?docid=2817)

According to what you told me Saturday, this is a misrepresentation of Norfolk’s resolution.

When resolutions of Council are misrepresented by commercial interests, it seems to me that Council must take immediate and unequivocal measures to insist that the company cease and desist with misrepresenting Council’s resolution.

I am writing to urge you and Norfolk Council to adopt a new resolution declaring that Norfolk County has NOT indicated that we are a willing host community. The misinformation is in an official report that Bruce Power is required to compile for the Environmental Assessment that Norfolk Council did endorse. The statement that Norfolk has indicated it is a willing host community is, according to what you told me Saturday, untrue.

That is just one untruth among others that Bruce’s spokespeople have been issuing. As you’ll recall, after Drs. Moffett and Boreham appeared before Council in November, I sent you and every councillor evidence that Bruce’s spokespersons had misled council. Unfortunately, neither you nor any councillor even acknowledged that I had sent this information. I am reiterating that information here.

At Norfolk Council’s November meeting, I listened as Bruce Power’s expert spokesmen answered Council’s questions. On at least two instances, Council was given false information.

When Councillor Wells asked what portion of EA’s result in the project being turned down, Dr. Moffett replied that it was about a one-third rejection rate. Not true!

At Toby Barrett’s 2007 Energy Symposium, Ontario Energy Commissioner Gordon Miller stated that of the latest 63 EA’s, only 2 had not been approved. That’s not one-third. It’s one-thirtieth. Dr. Moffett has 30 years experience in EA’s. He would surely have known that his one-third figure was wildly exaggerated.

The one-third figure, no doubt, eased the minds of wary councillors who’d used terms like “done deal” and fixed”. Too bad it wasn’t even close to being accurate or true.

(In a personal conversation between myself and Dr. Moffett at the December info session in Jarvis, Dr. Moffett confirmed that the 30% figure was essentially pulled from the air and was, in no way, accurate.)

Later at the November Council meeting, Bruce’s spokesmen were asked whether nuclear power plants are ever shut down due to heat waves and a lack of enough cool water. Dr. Boreham responded that such occurrences do not happen. Not true!

Here are some links to news items concerning several reactors being shut down in recent years due to heat waves:

Heat wave ignites problems in ET - http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2007/aug/18/heat-wave-ignites-problems-in-et/

Michigan Reactor Shut Down Due to Heat - http://a4nr.org/library/failures/07.31.06-bloomburg

Heatwave shuts down nuclear power plants - http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2006/jul/30/energy.weather

References for "Nuclear Power Can’t Stand the Heat" - http://www.citizen.org/cmep/energy_enviro_nuclear/nuclear_power_plants/reactor_safety/articles.cfm?ID=17013

Many more such examples exist. An expert in nuclear energy would surely know about these problems.

It is unfortunate that Norfolk Council was subjected to these misleading statements. I hope you will demand accurate, revised answers from these experts. The public deserves the truth – not corporate spin aimed solely at dispelling public opposition. When there are two big falsehoods presented in such a short presentation, it begs the question about the truth of other statements coming from Bruce Power.

Now, as I’ve shown from the quote above, Bruce Power is misleading the public, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency with regard to Norfolk’s willingness to host a nuclear facility.

Finally, I refer you to Toby Barrett’s most recent mailing. MPP Barrett informs us that his own office polling shows that 70% of H-N respondents oppose new nuclear if there is a possibility of keeping the coal plant running. Judging from the fact that Nanticoke was to be shut down in 2009 but didn’t, the possibility of retaining existing jobs, as well as augmenting those jobs with new “clean coal” initiatives would keep our citizens employed and add new jobs at our existing plant. Bruce is a private company and private investment in nuclear energy has all but dried up completely. Warren Buffet recently backed out of new nuclear projects; Moody’s Investment Services has said that jurisdictions investing in nuclear will have their bond ratings downgraded; Wall St. and Bay St. are staying clear of this literally toxic asset. We have jobs now. Bruce cannot possibly guarantee that the jobs they are promising for 10 years from now will ever materialize.

Best regards,

Jim Elve

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