(1) PARADISE HILL, 400 TO 500 PEOPLE CAME!
Paradise Hill, SK, 2001 population: 486
(Source: Statistics Canada)
Between 400 and 500 people attended the meeting in the Kinsmen Hall. All
the chairs were put out. Still, the back wall
Was lined by people – standing room only.
For me it was quite amazing. People came from miles around, and from
Alberta. Men, women, teen-agers and a few children.
The meeting started at 7:30pm. People remained intently focused on the
presentation and then the questions/answers. You didn’t hear fidgeting,
coughing or chairs scraping the floor. The odd small cry from a baby.
Otherwise it was people absorbing and processing information. For
The questions were excellent. A lot of people were very well informed -
they’d done research, probably on the internet – it showed in the questions.
Jim Harding, retired U of Regina professor and author of “Canada’s Deadly
Secret: Saskatchewan Uranium and the Global Nuclear System” gave a
presentation. Between his presentation and his responses to questions from
the audience, some of the topics addressed were:
- the lack of, and need for public participation in the decisions around
nuclear development in the province
– in response to the question, “Why do we need this extra energy?”, Jim
addressed the feasibility study published by Bruce Power last fall. A
legitimate feasibility would have addressed this question. It didn’t
address that or the spectrum of options that are available.
– Saskatchewan is a small power grid. The construction of one large
nuclear reactor does not make sense if you are an engineer at SaskPower who
is designing the best way to supply the population with a reliable energy
source at a reasonable price. Nuclear reactors are notorious for down-time.
- The Nuclear Advisory Committee report is due by the end of March.
Sitting on the Advisory Panel are heads of Bruce Power, Cameco, and Areva.
Patrick Moore who is not from Saskatchewan and who is funded by the American
Nuclear Energy Institute is a member of the panel. (See note on him – -
– water-related issues
– health and environmental health issues
– the nuclear chain down to depleted uranium
(Aside: whenever people talk about “depleted” uranium and “spent” fuel
rods, I want to correct the language. The words “depleted” and “spent” make
them sound benign. They are radioactive, anything but depleted or spent.)
– costs to future generations, especially in relation to the radioactive
waste which will have to be managed for thousands of years.
– globally, a downward trend line for the percentage of energy that is
– one woman asked about the disposal of radioactive waste: if a nuclear
reactor is built in Saskatchewan, will that not open the door to us becoming
the disposal site for radioactive waste for all of Canada and further?
– the experience of the Americans with Yucca Mountain. They are unable to
find a place to get rid of their radioactive waste.
– tritium in water supplies
– one fellow asked if he was right: it seems to him that the industry
people will make all the money and that we will pay all the costs.
– a woman originally from Germany told of her family’s experience in the
aftermath of the accident, even though they were thousands of miles from
Chernobyl. (Children had to be kept indoors. They couldn’t eat the food
SOS (Save Our Saskatchewan), the local group that organized the meeting
invited Bruce Power and the MLA to attend the meeting, Jim invited anyone
from the audience that might be from BP or the government to join the
discussion, but no one came forward.
I don’t know how many people signed the petition.
There were very good brochures on various topics related to the
nuclear/uranium question. I saw them in the hands of many of the people in
At the end of the meeting, people fell into small groups as they will do in
communities. The determination of the people in the group I joined (people
new to me), was quite fierce. It was reflective of a sentiment expressed
through the questions and heard in snippets of other conversations. These
400 to 500 people are going out into their communities. They will be
spreading the word and putting their muscle into the fight against nuclear
The people in Warman SK stopped a uranium processing plant in the 1980’s.
Unfortunately for the people in Ontario it got built there. The people who
came to Paradise Hill are going to stop a nuclear reactor being built there.
But they are also dedicated to helping the other communities along the North
Sask River (the alternate sites) in the same battle.
(2) PASS THE NUCLEAR REACTOR TO BORDEN, SK
The between-communities passing of information is incredible.
In the polite conversations between the land-owners approached by Bruce
Power, and the BP representative, talk sometimes got around to, “If not
here, where would BP be looking to build a reactor?”.
– at Borden (near a bend in the River – good siting because the water flows
faster at the bend)
– or near Saint Louis.
Between last night and today there has already been a flurry of activity at
Borden. Thanks to the people at Paradise Hill!
Do you know anyone from Saint Louis? They should be told that they may be
next on the firing line.
(3) SOS! MEETING IN P.A.-LANDOWNERS APPROACHED, ARE LOOKING FOR A GROUP
LIKE SOS IN PARADISE
Need some help here:
A fellow from Prince Albert contacted the SOS group in Paradise Hill today.
There is no group he knows of in the P.A. area, and land owners have already
been approached by BP.
The only way I can think of to get people in P.A. connected is through Jim
Thursday, March 12 – 1:00 pm at the SIAST Woodland Campus, Prince Albert
Please spread the word.
Also, Jim will be:
Wednesday, March 11 – 7:30 pm at the Shellbrook Legion Hall
(just off main street by the Post Office)
These are free public meetings (but donations more than welcome!)
Question & Answer and Discussion Period to follow
(4) WATER USE AT NUCLEAR PLANTS, FROM THE UNION OF CONCERNED SCIENTISTS
Many thanks to Kevin. This will be put to good use!
(5) PATRICK MOORE, ON THE NUCLEAR ADVISORY PANEL
” Along with former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator
Christine Todd Whitman, Patrick Moore launched a new nuclear public
relations campaign in the US in May 2006 called the Clean and Safe Energy
Coalition . The Coalition was organised and funded by the Nuclear Energy
Institute, with help from the public relations firm, Hill and Knowlton that
has a $8 million account with the nuclear industry. 
According to Environment News Services: “Nuclear power advocates are hoping
that Moore and Whitman can sell the American public on the benefits of
nuclear power and help spark the resurgence of an industry that has not
constructed a new plant in some 30 years”. 
An editorial in the Colombia Journalism Review noted the benefit to the
nuclear industry of having Moore and Whitman front their PR exercise, as in
subsequent media articles Moore was often quoted as a “founder of
Greenpeace” or an “environmentalist,” but not as a paid consultant to the
nuclear industry: “Life is complicated. So are front people for industry
causes – or any cause, in a world of increasingly sophisticated p.r. We have
no position on nuclear power. We just find it maddening that Hill & Knowlton
… should have such an easy time working the press”.
In an article together, Moore and Whitman argued the coalition will “help
raise awareness of the benefits of clean and safe nuclear energy and
continue to build support for nuclear energy as a component of a
comprehensive plan to meet America’s future electricity needs”. 
The name of the coalition is no co-incidence, nor was the language used in
the article, such as clean, cheap and safe. It reflects a world-wide public
relations push by the nuclear industry to portray itself as “clean” and
(6) AECL SEES NUCLEAR POTENTIAL. SASK GOVERNMENT HAS EXPRESSED INTEREST IN
Many thanks to Willi.
AECL sees nuclear potential; Sask. government has expressed interest in
The StarPhoenix (Saskatoon)
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Page: C7 / FRONT
Byline: Joanne Paulson
Source: The StarPhoenix
Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. (AECL) sees bright possibilities for nuclear
research and development in Saskatchewan, not just the building of a power
plant, says its director of marketing and business development.
Ron Oberth was in Saskatoon Wednesday to meet with business leaders and
university officials to discuss the potential for partnerships with AECL.
“Right now, it’s ‘small p’ partnerships. We haven’t had any formal
discussions with anybody,” Oberth said in an interview.
AECL, a Crown corporation, is one of three nuclear plant manufacturers being
considered by Bruce Power should it decide to build a power plant in
However, there are other possibilities, said Oberth. At present, all of the
nuclear research and development in Canada is done at Chalk River, Ont.
“We’ve also said to Saskatchewan, in addition to a power reactor, there are
many other opportunities that we are looking at — for example isotope
production, or perhaps a research reactor, or the production of hydrogen,”
Hydrogen is used in tarsands upgrading and has potential in transportation,
said Oberth. When hydrogen is produced with nuclear technology, no
greenhouse gases are created, he added.
Premier Brad Wall likes the concept of smaller reactors, noted Oberth, and
it’s possible to set up a team to investigate the design of such reactors
suitable for hydrogen creation.
These kinds of potential uses are “a nice fit” for Saskatchewan, he said.
“What we would like to do is collaborate with University of Saskatchewan
officials and help set up a nuclear centre of excellence that would
complement and augment some of the work that’s going on at Chalk River,”
AECL has chosen Saskatchewan as a potential location for such research
because of the interest of the government, the university’s facilities
including the Canadian Light Source synchrotron for nuclear materials
research and the uranium mined in the province’s North.
Much has been said recently about the province of Saskatchewan’s interest in
forming partnerships with AECL. The Saskatchewan Party government has
expressed interest in such partnerships, but has said it will not take a
financial position in AECL.
New research potential is the unique thing AECL could bring to Saskatchewan,
which the other two nuclear power plant developers would not, said Oberth.
“You’d be getting a reactor designed either in Pittsburgh mainly or in
France. All of the engineering would be done off-shore, and you’d have a
power plant,” said Oberth.
Last Friday, AECL submitted a bid for the next two reactors to be built in
Ontario. AECL is up against Westinghouse, an American firm, and Areva, the
French government-owned company. They are the same two companies being
considered, along with AECL, by Bruce Power.
“It was a major day in the company’s history,” said Oberth.
“That’s a must-win for us because that’s our home field. We as a company
must win the order for the next two reactors in Ontario to be able to
succeed internationally and (in) the rest of Canada.”
The agency running the tender process, Infrastructure Ontario, will make a
decision June 20.
The reactor model, an Advanced Candu Reactor 1000, is the same model AECL
would put forward to Bruce Power. It produces 1,085 megawatts of power.
AECL has experienced a few setbacks in recent years. The National Research
Universal (NRU) reactor, which manufactures medical radioisotopes, was shut
down in 2007 for upgrading, after the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
said the reactor was out of compliance. The shutdown created a temporary
shortage of isotopes.
Last year, AECL also abandoned development of its Maple reactors, which were
intended to replace the NRU reactor. The decision was made based on a series
of reviews after Maple failed several tests.
(7) NO NEW NUKES IN ONTARIO — A TEACH-IN Mar 13-14 (Film, Battle of
Mar 13-14, 2009, at the U of T, Toronto, Ontario
(Many thanks to Robert)
Join us for a teach-in on nuclear energy in Ontario. What
are the concerns surrounding nuclear energy, and what are
Registration is now live! To register go to
On the evening of Friday March 13 at 7:00 p.m. there will a
screening of the film Battle of Chernobyl. Earth Sciences
Auditorium (ES 1050), U of T. For a description of the movie
Workshops will be held all day on Saturday Mar. 14, 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m. in the Kofffler Centre, Room 108, U of T
This conference will provide valuable information on the
cost, the health effects, the ethical considerations, and
the effectiveness of nuclear energy as compared to
alternatives (e.g. renewable energy sources).
For more info: firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s Wrong With Nuclear? – links, organizations, resources
GOODWORK LIST INFO:
SUBSCRIBE to GoodWork at: http://www.GoodWorkCanada.ca
or e-mail to: email@example.com