2014-09-11 / Front Page

Opposition to Canadian nuclear waste dump gaining ground

By Kelly Krager
Editor • kkrager@mihomepaper.com • 810-245-9343

This map, provided by Stop The Great Lakes Nuclear Dump Inc., shows the location of a proposed nuclear waste site planned in Kincardine, Ontario, less than a mile from the shore of Lake Huron. This map, provided by Stop The Great Lakes Nuclear Dump Inc., shows the location of a proposed nuclear waste site planned in Kincardine, Ontario, less than a mile from the shore of Lake Huron. UPPER THUMB — Pressure from citizens, municipalities and lawmakers from Michigan, Ohio and Ontario has led Canadian officials to reexamine the plan to allow the burial of radioactive waste less than a mile from Lake Huron, Huron County Commissioner Clark Elftman announced during Tuesday’s Huron County Board of Commissioners meeting.

Elftman said a Canadian panel has resumed hearings regarding the controversial proposal by Ontario Power Generation to bury seven million cubic feet of low and intermediate level radioactive waste more than 2,000 feet below the surface of property it owns at the Bruce Power site in Kincardine, Ontario.

“A least it’s a step in the right direction for the Canadians. They can pull that off the lakeside, and we would be very grateful,” Elftman said.

Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution opposing the proposal April 21.

“It jeopardizes the fragile ecosystem of the lake,” Elftman said at the time.

According to Stop The Great Lakes Nuclear Dump Inc., a non-profit organization of concerned citizens who oppose the proposed site, 125 municipalities and legislators have passed resolutions asking the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission to reconsider the waste site’s location as of Sept. 2. Additionally, more than 70,000 people have signed a petition addressed to Leona Aglukkaq, Canadian Minister of the Environment, located online at www.stopthegreatlakesnucleardump.com.

The petition states: “We call on you to refuse Ontario Power Generation’s application to build an underground Deep Geological Repository for radioactive nuclear waste within the Municipality of Kincardine on the shores of Lake Huron that would threaten the drinking water of 40 million Canadians and Americans. We stand with concerned citizens in opposition to the building of an underground nuclear waste dump anywhere in the Great Lakes Basin.”

Upper Thumb residents will have a chance to voice their opinions about the proposed site on 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 22, during a public town hall meeting hosted by state Sens. Mike Green, R-Mayville, and Phil Pavlov, R-St. Clair Township at Sebewaing Township Hall, 14 E. Sharpsteen St. in Sebewaing.

The meeting is to inform residents about a Canadian nuclear waste dump proposal and plans by Michigan lawmakers to stop it. Sens. Green and Pavlov are leading an effort in Lansing to halt construction of the dump. Their legislation has passed the Michigan Senate unanimously and awaits action in the House of Representatives. More than 60 communities throughout the region have recently passed resolutions in support of the measures.

For more information, call Sen. Green’s office at 517-373-1777.

Also during Tuesday’s meeting, commissioners:

• Approved the purchase of seven hand held radios for the Emergency Services Department from Advanced Wireless Telecom at a cost of $9,130.

• Adopted a new fee schedule for immunizations provided by the Huron County Health Department that increases the administration fee to $20 from $12.

• Employed Ashley Kidd and Denise Gornozicz as temporary part-time employees in the Register of Deeds Office at a rate of $12 per hour effective Sept. 10 and terminating Jan. 31, 2015.

• Employed Jordan Gunsell as a full-time corrections officer in the Sheriff’s Office, with a salary of $33,150, effective Sept. 10.

• Proclaimed October 2014 as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

• Authorized the county clerk to advertise for vacancies on the Department of Public Works board and the Human Services Board with a deadline of 5 p.m., Oct. 3.

• Granted permission to Huron County SafePlace to hold a candlelight vigil in front of the County Building on Oct. 21.

• Approved Family Medical Leave Act requests as submitted by Richard Learman and Kelly Jo Leavine.

• Paid bills in the amount of $1,021,681.

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