Friday, December 14, 2007


As an addition to the Galloping Beaver's great post on Chalk River and the isotope fiasco, check out this article from the Toronto Star from yesterday!!!

What surprised me was the end of the article, which points out that the safety deficiency at Chalk River wasn't found by the nuclear watch dog group CNSC, but by AECL themselves!

"This supply was cut off when AECL shut down Chalk River three weeks ago, after suddenly "discovering" during a four-day maintenance shutdown it had been running the reactor for almost two years without safety upgrades required under the operating licence issued by the nuclear safety commission.

At a hearing last week before the nuclear safety commission, AECL vice-president Brian McGee said the company had voluntarily shut down the reactor because safety was the highest priority, despite disruption to world isotope supply."

I have to admit, the idea of this being a manufactured crisis designed to make life hard on CNSC (who have been holding up plans by AECL to open two NEW reators - which don't meet safety regulations yet - and therefore jeopardizing the sale of major parts of AECL to GE) did seem too horrible to believe.

Until, that is, I realized that AECL shut down the reactor THEMSELVES, and then blamed CNSC for not letting them restart it without actually doing any of the safety upgrades (one week, "safety was the highest priority" the next, CNSC was endangering the world's isotope supply, and THAT was the highest priority).


The Prime Minister's right, someone DOES need to be held accountable for this mess. But I don't think it's CNSC that should be worried!!!

Recommend this Post

No comments: