[ RadSafe ] "Clarington hopes Premier okays new reactors"

Muckerheide, James jimm at WPI.EDU
Sat Nov 26 06:11:09 CST 2005



The nuclear power role in providing additional secure baseload capacity and
generation continues to grow.


Regards, Jim Muckerheide



Globe and Mail


Clarington hopes Premier okays new reactors




Saturday, November 26, 2005 Page A14

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty is widely expected to give the green light to
build the province's first new nuclear reactors in more than two decades to
help address the looming electricity crisis. When he does, he will make John
Mutton a very happy man.

Mr. Mutton, the mayor of Clarington, has been tirelessly lobbying Mr.
McGuinty to expand the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station in the
fast-growing community about 80 kilometres east of Toronto.

The government will not formally announce its nuclear strategy until after it
receives a report from the Ontario Power Authority, which will recommend what
role nuclear energy should play in the province. The government agency plans
to deliver its report early next month.

Mr. Mutton said the government has no choice but to endorse nuclear energy.
He is not alone in this belief. The government has promised to close all of
the province's aging coal-fired generating stations by early 2009. The coal
stations produce about one-quarter of the province's electricity.

"When you're taking this much coal off, your only choice is new nuclear," Mr.
Mutton said in an interview yesterday. "You cannot put up enough windmills or
solar panels to provide energy."

New Democratic Party Leader Howard Hampton also said he expects the
government to roll out an ambitious plan to build new reactors not just at
Darlington but also at the Bruce Nuclear Station on Lake Huron.

"I don't think Darlington is the only piece of the picture," he said in an
interview yesterday.

Industry officials support Mr. Mutton's argument that the Darlington station
would be the best choice for building new reactors. For starters, they say,
the station has room to expand -- it is designed for eight reactors but has
four. As well, residents of Clarington would support the expansion -- the
city passed a resolution two weeks ago to that effect.

"Community acceptance is vital," especially on something as divisive as
nuclear reactors, one industry source said. He added that officials from the
Ministry of Energy and the Ontario Power Authority have been asking lots of
questions about Darlington.

Mr. Mutton discussed Darlington with Mr. McGuinty this month in China, where
he was part of the Premier's trade mission.

"He needs to know, if he's going to have [new reactors] that he has a willing
host community," Mr. Mutton said. He also met with deputy energy minister
James Gillis this week.

No decisions have been made, said Erika Botond, a spokeswoman in Energy
Minister Donna Cansfield's office. "Until then, it would be premature to
discuss whether there would be new nuclear, let alone a specific site."

Mr. Mutton said the attraction for Clarington is the opportunity to create
new jobs. Two years ago, the community lost out on a race to host a
$12-billion experimental project seeking to harness nuclear fusion, which is
the way the sun produces energy. Canada's bid was withdrawn because of a lack
of support from the federal government.

Mr. McGuinty gave his strongest signal yet last September that his government
is considering building new nuclear reactors. "We are prepared to go ahead
with economical, safe, new nuclear if that is recommended by the OPA," he


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