Roughly 40 people attend citizen forum on proposed nuclear waste site
Majority expressed strong opposition to the project
Article published on 28 April 2022
logo imprimer
Noter cet article :
0 vote

A public forum was held on Tuesday April 26 by officials from MRC Pontiac to discuss the proposed “near surface disposal facility” at Canadian Nuclear Laboratories’ site at Chalk River. The event took place at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Fort-Coulonge and brought out around 40 people. The event was organized by Pontiac Warden Jane Toller and was meant to give citizens an opportunity to voice their opinions prior to the upcoming regulatory hearing at the end of May. Toller has already registered to speak at the event, and said that she would be submitting a recording of the forum as well. Pontiac MP Sophie Chatel has also filed a request to intervene at the hearing.

The NSDF is an engineered mound that would hold up to 1 million cubic metres of low-level nuclear waste, the majority of which is already housed at the Chalk River site. Public consultations on the project have been ongoing since 2016.

Many attendees questioned the decision-making process for the location, which would be roughly 1 km from the Ottawa River.

Davidson entrepreneur Jim Coffey said that residents shouldn’t be “intimidated by the science”, explaining that the onus should be on CNL to prove that their choice of location for the site was the best option.

Resident Dave Herault, who works at Chalk River, said that he wasn’t sure if he supported the NSDF project but pointed out that a lot of the waste the site would hold is currently sitting next to the river. He also commented on the number of Pontiacers employed at the site, either as actual employees or contractors.

Litchfield Mayor Colleen Larivière, in a French-language interview, said that this was a long-standing issue, and despite assurances from the experts over the years, she was concerned about the possibility of natural disasters and also the longevity of the plan.

“Well, this debate here has been going on since 2016. It’s a major concern for everyone who lives downriver from the Chalk River,” she said (translated). “The fact that the site in question is less than a kilometer from the source of drinking water for several of our municipalities, as well as the cottages and residences on the shore of the Ottawa River, represent an inconceivable risk for the people of Pontiac. I understand that several experts have stated that the site would be safe and, yes, possibly in a perfect world, but we all know that we do not live in a perfect world. So that’s it, will the facility remain safe from earthquakes, floods, natural disasters and how will it hold up over time. My concern is for future generations, my grandchildren, my great-grandchildren. Once it’s done, it’ll be there forever and there’s no going back. That’s a million cubic meters of waste by 2070, they have to find another solution, it’s definitely not a legacy we want to leave to our future generations.”

Catherine Emond-Provencher, the new president of the Pontiac NDP Riding Association, said that they are against the facility and questioned the independence of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, the government organization that regulates nuclear energy and material in Canada.

Following the meeting, Toller said that the next step would be initiating a petition that she could present at the regulatory hearing.

Les Nouvelles du Pontiac

Kidney walk coming to the Shawville Fairgrounds this Sunday

28 September 2022

This Sunday (October 2), the Shawville Fairgrounds will be the host of the latest iteration of the Pontiac Kidney Walk. The walk, which raises funds for the Kidney Foundation of Canada, was organized locally by Clarendon resident Randy Russell. Registration opens at 11:30 a.m. and the 5 km walk (...)

lire la suite

Hydro Quebec warning of significant delays for residential, commercial hookups

27 September 2022

Hydro Quebec is advising customers that they are facing significant delays in connecting both residential and commercial customers to the grid, mainly due to high demand. Alain Paquette, Hydro Quebec's community relations officer for the Outaouais region, added that with the heavy storms (...)

lire la suite

Ladysmith Oktoberfest returning this weekend

27 September 2022

For the first time since 2019, the village of Ladysmith will be hosting their traditional Oktoberfest celebration on Friday and Saturday this weekend (September 30 and October 1). First established in 1985, Oktoberfest Ladysmith typically brings out hundreds of people to celebrate the region's (...)

lire la suite

CISSSO announces pilot project to source food locally

26 September 2022

Regional health authority CISSSO invited local media to a press conference this morning to announce a new pilot project that they've started with several partners, which focuses on purchasingo local produce and food products from suppliers in the Pontiac. Joanne Dubois, a food service (...)

lire la suite

Interprovincial bridge closed four nights next week

26 September 2022

Ontario Power Generation is advising motorists that the interprovincial bridge near the Chenaux Generating Station in Portage-du-Fort will be closed overnight for most of next week for upgrades. The bridge will be closed between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. on the following dates: Oct. 3, 4, 5 & 6 Oct. (...)

lire la suite

New murder trial for Johan Mitchell Blake MacLennan set for November

26 September 2022

The new trial of a Fort-Coulonge man accused of killing Harold Plugowsky on September 2, 2020 is set to begin in November and last six weeks, according to information obtained by CHIP 101.9. Johan Mitchell Blake MacLennan, who was 37 at the time, is accused of first-degree murder in the death (...)

lire la suite


Advertising