As you know, I have written a number of past articles regarding the proposed Deep Geological Repository (DGR) in South Bruce, and have publicly advocated for the current process of research and site selection. Recently, opponents of the DGR have questioned my motivation, suggesting that I’m somehow getting paid or compensated for this work. The truth is, I’m writing this letter, as I’ve written all my letters, on my own time, as a volunteer, not as part of my job. Here are three reasons why I have done so in the past, and hope to continue in the future.
1. As a person who’s worked 20 years in the nuclear industry, I have knowledge and perspective about nuclear waste that most of my neighbours don’t have, and I feel compelled to share that. Bruce County has a 55-year history of dealing with spent nuclear fuel, as the original Douglas Point reactor went online 55 years ago this month. We know how to handle it, how to transport it, how to repackage it and how to store it. We know that it is something to be respected, but not something to be feared. I think we should determine our collective future based on science, facts and experience, not based on fear.
2. As a responsible, environmentally-aware citizen, I understand that nuclear power generation is a vital part of the fight against climate change, and for me, that means supporting all aspects of nuclear power, including the responsible long-term stewardship of nuclear waste. A DGR may or may not be the best thing for South Bruce, but it would give us an opportunity to be part of the solution.
3. As a home-owner and taxpayer in South Bruce, I want to see a bright economic future for local businesses and our coming generations of young people. A large and long-term project like the DGR would undoubtedly create a significant amount of local investment, and I feel that will spell good local jobs and much-needed tax revenue for our municipality. If the project goes ahead, I think most of us, even those who currently oppose it, will benefit from it in terms of higher property values, better services, and more opportunities for our children and grandchildren.
South Bruce is the home of many hard-working, conscientious, community-minded people. My fervent hope is that our community can decide our future through listening to each other, learning as much as we can, engaging in respectful dialog, and doing the best we can for our community, our country and our future generations.