Canada continues search for repository site

27 June 2017

Canada's Nuclear Waste Management Organisation (NWMO) said on 26 June that the communities of Central Huron and White River will no longer be considered as a potential host for a deep geological repository for used nuclear fuel. NWMO is searching for an acceptable site for the repository using a process known as Adaptive Phase Management. 

A two-phase preliminary assessment began in 2010 to narrow down study areas from a list of communities that had registered interest.  Central Huron and White River formally expressed interest in the project in 2012 and both passed the first phase - confirming that the community "appeared to have strong potential for meeting strict safety and geotechnical requirements, and for the project to align with its long-term vision" - in   2015.  However, following further studies, NWMO said it had not been able to expand interest or learning to "the level needed to give sufficient confidence to advance geotechnical studies in their immediate vicinities".

NWMO said it will "continue the process of narrowing down potential sites to host the project until it arrives at one preferred safe and socially acceptable site as the focus of more detailed site characterisation". Some 21  communities  in Ontario and Saskatchewan  requested preliminary assessments, and of 11 areas selected for Phase 2 studies, six now remain: Blind River and Elliot Lake; Ignace; Hornepayne; Huron-Kinloss; Manitouwadge; and South Bruce. 



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