The Canadian Nuclear Workers Council (CNWC) is pleased with the central role nuclear energy plays in the Ontario Government's Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP).
The updated Plan, released yesterday, recognizes the importance of Ontario's publically owned nuclear reactors to the environment and economy. Ontario remains committed to the cost-effective refurbishment of the Bruce and Darlington nuclear reactors and continued operation of the Pickering Nuclear Station to 2024. The four-year operating extension of Pickering will support the refurbishment outages during this period by reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the cost of electricity service to Ontario homes and businesses.
The CNWC also applauds Ontario's support to help create new export opportunities for nuclear innovations such as Small Modular Reactor Technology, nuclear fuel research and hydrogen production.
Each year Ontario's nuclear fleet helps avoid about 45 million tonnes of CO2 emissions – about the equivalent of taking approximately 10 million vehicles off the province's roads. This helps Ontario meet its climate change goals. As well, these reactors help avoid smog-causing emissions.
Today, Ontario's nuclear plants provide about 60% of the province's electricity or enough to power about 10 million homes. Nuclear energy is low cost, averaging less than 7 cents per kilowatt-hour, about 30% less than the average residential price for electricity.
Ontario is home to the majority of Canada's nuclear industry. Each year this industry contributes over $6 billion annually to the economy and supports 60,000 direct and indirect jobs. Ontario also benefits from millions of dollars in nuclear R&D and from the production of Cobalt-60, which is used to fight cancer cells.
"The Ontario government's investments in its nuclear fleet is a good decision for our environment and all Ontarians," stated Dave Shier, CNWC's National Director. "It ensures that families and businesses in the province will continue to benefit from a domestic, stable, benefit creating, low-cost source of clean energy for decades to come."
SOURCE: Canadian Nuclear Workers Council