- Category: news
- Created: Tuesday, 17 September 2013 13:24
- Published: Tuesday, 17 September 2013 13:24
- Written by Administrator 3
- Hits: 554
By Jordan MacKinnon
First Nations involvement was a major topic on the first day of Joint Review Panel hearings investigating the proposed deep geological repository in Kincardine.
In his opening statement, Saugeen First Nation Chief Randall Kahgee stated the Saugeen Ojibway Nation do not have a fundamental opposition to Ontario Power Generation’s plans to bury low-and-intermediate level nuclear waste at the Bruce nuclear site. However, Kahgee says the SON have not yet put their support behind the project, adding they have a signed agreement with OPG stating that the DGR project will not move ahead unless First Nation support is obtained.
Kahgee says it would have been easy to walk away from the project and form an opposition.
“That wouldn’t change the fact that we have a waste management problem in the territory. 80,000 cubic metres of low and intermediate level waste, 40-percent of Canada’s high level waste (used fuel) is in our territory and there’s no solution for what we’re going to do with it,” says Kahgee.
Kincardine mayor Larry Kraemer went before the panel to explain why his council got involved in finding a permanent solution for nuclear waste.
Kraemer told the panel the municipality and the current generation of its residents have benefited financially from nuclear power at the Bruce site and there’s a responsibility for those same people to find a solution for the radioactive waste it has generated over the past 40 years.
Kraemer says the public has been supportive of the project since its inception and was quick to defend the polling used to determine if Kincardine would be a willing host of a DGR.
He says he would have preferred a referendum to the telephone poll that was used, adding he has no doubt the polling was conclusive enough to move ahead, but also pointed out he wasn’t in office in the period from 2003 to 2006 when the polling was conducted.
“Had I been elected (a referendum) for sure would have happened. But that was a decision of the voter. I wasn’t elected, someone else (Glenn Sutton) lead for those three years, that’s democracy,” says Kraemer.
Kraemer adds by the time he was elected for his second stint as mayor in 2006, the municipality had already entered into the hosting agreement with OPG and a referendum was off the table.
“Project Justification” will be the topic of the day as the Joint Review Panel reconvenes at 9 o’clock this morning Kincardine.