OPG and TVA to promote SMR development

21 April 2022

Two of North America's leading nuclear utilities have unveiled a partnership to develop advanced nuclear technology as an integral part of a clean energy future and creating a North American energy hub. Canada’s Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and the US Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) will jointly work to help develop small modular reactors (SMTs) as an effective long-term source of carbon-free energy in both Canada and the USA.

The agreement allows the companies to coordinate their explorations into the design, licensing, construction and operation of SMRs. OPG and TVA have similar histories and missions. Both are based on public power models that developed from renewable hydroelectric generation before adding nuclear to their generation mixes. Today, nuclear generation accounts for significant portions of their carbon-free energy portfolios.

Both are also actively exploring SMR technologies. OPG is moving forward with plans to deploy an SMR at its Darlington nuclear facility in Clarington, ON. The Darlington site is the only location in Canada licensed for new nuclear with a completed and accepted Environmental Assessment. TVA currently holds the only US Nuclear Regulatory Commission Early Site Permit for SMR deployment at its Clinch River site near Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Although no exchange of funding is involved, the collaboration agreement will help OPG and TVA reduce the financial risk that comes from development of innovative technology, as well as future deployment costs.

OPG is planning to deploy an SMR at its Darlington nuclear facility (Photo: OPG)

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