Keeping you connected
to the DGR

By Marie Wilson


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The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), in conjunction with its role to manage the regulatory approvals process for Ontario Power Generation (OPG)'s proposed Deep Geologic Repository (DGR) Project for low- and intermediate-level nuclear waste (L&ILW), delivers an annual L&ILW DGR Community Partnership Program in Bruce County. 

The purpose of the program is to provide NWMO with opportunities to help sustain initiatives that are of importance to local residents, while providing the public with knowledge of NWMO’s role with respect to the L&ILW DGR. NWMO’s partnerships throughout Bruce County, on behalf of the L&ILW DGR Project, afford the company many opportunities to not only assist with worthy community initiatives, but to also clearly articulate NWMO’s role and that of OPG with the L&ILW DGR Project.

In 2009, NWM0 established 26 partnerships with community groups to support activities in the areas of environment, education, culturally-significant events/programs and Aboriginal communities. Building on the work that was done in its inaugural year, NWMO is now ready to proceed with support for its next round of partnerships.

Some of the initiatives are new such as the Walking Festival being organized by the Department of Community Services in Saugeen Shores. The event will be held on June 5 & 6, and is the first of its kind to take place in Bruce, Grey, Huron, Perth or Wellington counties. Some of the events scheduled for this festival include MacGregor’s Amazing Race (scavenger hunt at MacGregor Park), an Owl Prowl and Coyote Howl (again at MacGregor Park), Nordic walking lessons and walk, an Active Challenge Walk and a Heritage Walking tour, etc.

A number of the initiatives designated so far will build on last year’s progress. For instance, NWMO will continue its support of the expansion of the Chesley Medical Clinic in the Municipality of Arran-Elderslie, which is slated to increase from 3,100 square feet to 8,500 square feet. This will facilitate the creation of a Family Health Team with more doctors, nurse practitioners and other health care professionals. 

NWMO is also continuing its support of the Historic Saugeen Métis. Last year NWMO provided support for furnishings and equipment for the group’s storefront office in Southampton, while in 2010 NWMO will support the Second Annual Métis Rendezvous to be held on Aug. 14 at Fairy Lake Nature Area in Southampton. The Métis Fiddler Quartet, of Vancouver Olympics fame, will be performing its Canadian Métis Native old-style fiddling at this event.

Over half of the disbursements in 2009 were made on behalf of environment-related activities, and this practice is continuing for 2010 in keeping with NWMO’s emphasis on responsible environmental stewardship. Several of the environmental initiatives for the first round of sponsorship initiatives focus on the health and preservation of Lake Huron. 



Patsy McArthur (L) and Tammy Schummelketel of the Historic Metis, stand in front of the new storefront office in Southampton

For example, NWMO is a corporate sponsor for a one-day conference in Grand Bend on Aug. 20 entitled “Is The Coast Clear?” which, hosted by the Lake Huron Centre for Coastal Conservation, intends to explore the importance of biodiversity to the health of Lake Huron’s coastline. NWMO will also be providing financial support to assist the Municipality of Kincardine with the development of a Conservation Stewardship Plan for its beaches while, still on the theme of preservation, NWMO is also assisting Saugeen Shores volunteers with an initiative to improve their southern shoreline (Gobles Grove) by implementing a planting program to reduce sand migration.

It can also be noted that the stepwise, four-year geoscientific site characterization of the proposed location for the L&ILW DGR, at 680 metres or 2,230 feet beneath the Bruce nuclear site, is verifying the geologic conditions of the underground bedrock layers to ensure the ability of the L&ILW DGR to safely isolate and contain the waste for tens of thousands of years. This will protect the environment (including Lake Huron) and the public . Field work for these investigations is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

For more information about the L&ILW DGR Community Partnership Program, please E-mail Kevin Orr at korr@nwmo.ca or call Kevin at 519-368-1644.

For more information about OPG’s proposed L&ILW DGR, please visit: www.nwmo.ca/dgr or call Marie Wilson at 519-368-1639.


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Wednesday, June 02, 2010