Committee registers concerns about proposed nuclear waste disposal site

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The Standing Committee on Environmental Protection, Water and Waste Management today approved a motion recommending that the City register its concerns about a proposed nuclear waste disposal site at Chalk River Laboratories, approximately 200 kilometres northwest of Ottawa.

The project proposed by Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, which is currently being reviewed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, would move the existing waste at the site adjacent to the Ottawa River into an engineered storage facility 1 kilometre away from the water.

The Chalk River site is located outside of the City of Ottawa’s source water protection zone and deemed low risk to Ottawa’s water supply. To further mitigate potential future risks, City staff will submit a list of questions and concerns for consideration during the project’s public review period. The City’s areas of concern include:

  • The facility design should demonstrate net lower risk to the river
  • Import of radioactive waste from out of province
  • Need for safeguards to protect the river during demolition and waste transfer
  • Need for timely notification of spills or release to the river
  • Prompt access to upriver monitoring data
  • Further technical questions

For more information on the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s review process for the proposed Chalk River disposal site, please visit cnsc-ccsn.gc.ca.

Recommendations from today’s meeting will rise to Council on April 14.

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