Canada’s NII and Bruce Power launch Net Zero Partnerships programme

20 July 2021

Canada’s Nuclear Innovation Institute (NII) and Bruce Power on 15 July launched the Net Zero Partnerships (NZP) programme, which will identify and support local opportunities for carbon reduction, sequestration and offset projects. The NZP programme will provide a way for the nuclear industry to collaborate with governments, farmers, environmental groups and others on innovative ways to reduce the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. It will explore the potential for initiatives such as carbon sequestration and protecting natural habitats to make measurable contributions to reaching a state of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in the coming years.

“Everyone has a role to play in a net-zero future. At Bruce Power, we supply Ontarians with clean, reliable, emissions-free nuclear electricity, which will be a critical part of a decarbonised future,” said James Scongack, Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Operational Services at Bruce Power. “The Net Zero Partnerships programme will drive community-based initiatives that will help us achieve our net-zero goals, recognising that we all have a role to play in the fight against climate change.”

Operating within the NII, the NZP programme will support Bruce Power’s commitment to achieving net-zero operations on its site by 2027 as well as Canada’s national goal of meeting the net zero target by 2050. Reaching such an ambitious target is challenging, but also presents new opportunities for clean economic growth. NII said. There is widespread agreement among governments and industry leaders that getting to net zero will require fresh approaches to cutting emissions, including the need to exploit the ability of soils, forests, wetlands and other natural features to capture and hold carbon from the atmosphere.

The NZP programme will be a local catalyst for alliances that can develop these cooperative net-zero projects. The programme will be led by Chad Richards, a former Director of NII’s Clean Energy Frontier programme. The NZP programme will also manage the Community Carbon Coalition launched earlier this year by Bruce Power to collect information on potential projects with Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, businesses and agricultural organisations across southwestern Ontario.

Also on 15 July, Bruce Power announced its plan to contribute to a ‘Made in Ontario’ economic recovery, investing CAD3 billion ($2.37bn) over the next 18 months through the company’s Life-Extension Programme, isotope development, and asset optimisation strategy. Bruce Power said the investment will create and sustain thousands of highly-skilled jobs and drive economic benefits throughout the Clean Energy Frontier region and across Ontario.

Mike Rencheck, Bruce Power’s President and CEO, outlined the company’s five-pillar strategy to contribute to a revitalised economy, while providing global leadership in the production of medical isotopes, contributing to Canada’s Net Zero 2050 goals, and securing reliable electricity for future decades.

“Bruce Power’s Life-Extension Programme continues to play a key role in stimulating the economy as Ontario moves into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Rencheck said. “This investment programme will also ensure a steady global supply of medical isotopes and a reliable source of clean electricity that will make significant contributions to a Net Zero Ontario and Canada.”

Bruce Power’s strategy consists of five pillars: Recharging the economy through private investment; advancing medical innovation through global isotope production; taking action on Net Zero; securing highly skilled jobs for Ontarians; and advancing the future of nuclear.

Rocco Rossi, President of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, said: “Ontario’s nuclear sector injects billions into the economy every year, providing low-cost, reliable and carbon-free electricity that our businesses need to stay competitive in the world market, and life-saving medical isotopes which are vital resources in the global medical community.”

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