Canadian Nuclear Plant Leaks Radioactive Water Into Lake Ontario

With all the focus placed on the Japanese radiation leak as well as the toxic plume of radioactive particles (possibly containing uranium and plutonium) heading for the United States, another potential disaster is receiving virtually no attention.

Of course, attention should be paid to the Japanese situation. Nevertheless, it seems the continent of North America is being hit from two sides in terms of radiation danger.

On March 16, a report was released by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) stating that Canada’s Ontario Power Generation has released radioactive water into Lake Ontario via a leak in the Pickering A nuclear generating station.

As a result of what appears to be a pump seal failure, tens of thousands of litres of radioactive water escaped the generating station on Monday and ended up in Lake Ontario.

This is concerning for a number of reasons, but it is especially concerning considering the fact that Lake Ontario is the main source of drinking water for millions of people.

No doubt this is an attempt to hush concern over another radioactive accident amid anxiety over the catastrophe in Japan.

So they can push the “Nuclear is safe” agenda, just like coal, oil and gas companies do. No doubt the new speech about nuclear will include “A little radiation won’t hurt anyone, it’s natural.”

John Luxat, an “expert” on radiation from McMaster University claims the water that found its way into Lake Ontario Monday is actually not radioactive at all. In an interview with the CTV News Channel, Luxat stated, “It is not radioactive; it is not going through the reactors.

It is actually just going through steam generators to produce steam to drive the turbines. It is used to remove heat from the heavy water going into the generators, but it doesn’t at any time go into the reactor.”

However, it conflicts with a report (that was meant to be reassuring) from OPG itself. Also in the same interview with CTV News Channel, Ted Gruetzner of OPG said, “People are concerned about nuclear power, but this particular incident is normal water with a bit of radiation. It is well below our regulatory and other limits.”

Apparently, the nuclear industry was unable to get its story straight this time around.

According to Mr. Luxat, there is no radiation involved with this water spill. But Mr. Gruetzner has admitted that there is. As an employee of OPG, it would not seem to be to his advantage to make such an admission, so we can assume with great probability that there is, at the very least, some radiation now polluting  Lake Ontario.

As Gordon Edwards, spokesperson for the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, stated, “That water came from the spent fuel bays right into Lake Ontario. The spent fuel bays in Japan are currently the source of some of the greatest radiation exposures.

If there is an accident in Pickering, the fact that there is a direct pathway from the spent fuel bay into Lake Ontario should be quite alarming.”

I guess the Untied States is not the only country ruled by Big Industry, which is allowed to ruin the environment at the cost of the people.

This is another reason we should keep fighting for renewable, safe, clean energy for all the world.

Read More: CBC News

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Photo Credit: Eyeline-Imagery via Flickr

6 thoughts on “Canadian Nuclear Plant Leaks Radioactive Water Into Lake Ontario”

  1. Why should we have to rely on the plant operators for information regarding the radioactivity of the water? Why don’t we just test it directly?

    And, yes, radiation is natural. It does kill people. What would be useful here would be context. How many additional rems will this expose people to and how many are they normally exposed to? What increase in cancer rates is this liable to cause?

    If we are too imprecise about these sorts of things, and rely too much on gut, we may wind up dealing with our small problems at the expense of our big problems with the result being greater damage to the environment and more lives lost than if we had been able to prioritize more effectively. My sense of it is that Global Warming and nuclear proliferation (which is related to plant proliferation) are far more threatening than a 100 years worth of occasional plant leaks and disasters.

  2. they blew up many popular springs i can recall in the 1980’s so that they could protect us from the polutants and the possibility of rogue strains of ecoli and geardiasysts. water i had been drinking all my life without a problem. i wish the government would stop trying to protect me. i dont need their protection. i can protect myself. how many people will this radiation leak into lake ontario contribute to them getting cancer, and how many of them will have the least clue that it came from their drinking water. action needs be taken before your fighting for your life with the cancer cause when your dead they just bury their mistakes.

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