The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has approved Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd’s application to renew the operating licence for the Chalk River Laboratories Site for a period of five years.

The new licence comes into effect 1 November 2011 and is valid until 31 October 2016. The previous 63-month licence expired on 31 October.

The operating licence was granted following a two-day Commission hearing held respectively in Ottawa on 8 June 2011 and in Chalk River on 4 October 2011. At the hearing, AECL experts, CNSC staff and community and industry stakeholders made written submissions and/or oral presentations to the Commission. Based on AECL’s application and submissions, CNSC staff recommended the licence be renewed.

“I am extremely pleased that the Commission has renewed the Chalk River operating licence for five years,” said Dr. Robert Walker, AECL President and Chief Executive Officer. “This license is vital to enabling AECL to deliver value to Canadians and the world as Canada’s premier nuclear Science and Technology organization.”

The Chalk River Laboratories operating licence covers a broad range of nuclear activities and facilities, including the operation of the National Research Universal (NRU) reactor. A key condition of the new licence is completion of AECL’s Integrated Implementation Plan for the NRU reactor to implement improvements to meet current codes and standards, and to support the continued safe and reliable operation of the reactor.

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