NB Power, the operator of Canada’s 660MWe Point Lepreau NPP in New Brunswick has started the licence renewal process for the plant. In June 2016, NB Power applied for a five-year Power Reactor Operating Licence (PROL) issued by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC). The current PROL expires in June 2017. NB Power is preparing for a two-part public hearing process which begins in early 2017.
The Candu reactor at Point Lepreau, commissioned in 1983, was taken off line in March 2008 to undergo a major refurbishment aimed at extending operations by an estimated 25 years (until 2035). The refurbishment ran into a series of problems and it failed to meet its original 2009 restart date. The reactor was reconnected to the grid in October 2012. With the delay of more than three years, the cost escalated from an initial budget of CAD1.3bn ($978m) CAD2.3bn.