OPG in the Community: August, 2020

         Fred Kuntz

Making hay: While summer’s sun shines across the Bruce area, employees of Ontario Power Generation (OPG) continue to help keep the lights on in Ontario, by processing nuclear-energy by-products at the Western Waste Management Facility (WWMF). Safety protocols for the COVID-19 pandemic remain in place across OPG – including social distancing, hand-washing and sanitizing, and use of masks when working in close proximity – even as the caseload trends lower in Ontario, and more OPG employees return to their offices. Work continues on important WWMF projects, including construction of Storage Buildings 5 & 6 for used fuel and completion of upgrades to our incinerator, which returns to service this month. All of this supports an essential service: the delivery of clean, reliable, affordable electricity to run our homes, businesses and hospitals. Together we will #PowerOn.

View to the future: OPG’s Nuclear Waste Management division is pleased to play a key role in the new Centre for Canadian Nuclear Sustainability. Based in Pickering, the centre will focus on strategies and innovations to support the decommissioning of nuclear stations. That includes developing new technologies in waste management, to reduce, re-use and recycle the by-products and materials that come from the closure and dismantling of power plants.

Around Ontario and beyond:

·         Pickering 2025:  The Province of Ontario has announced support for OPG’s proposal to keep the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station operating until the end of 2025, pending regulatory approval. OPG’s plan is to continue operating Units 1 and 4 to the end of 2024 and Units 5 to 8 until the end of 2025. The sequential shutdown of the units will optimize the value in the assets, strengthen the Ontario electricity system and benefit the customer. Pickering has been providing reliable baseload power for Ontario homes and businesses for almost 50 years.

·         Financial strength: OPG reported net income of $458 million in the second quarter of 2020, up from $351 million a year before.  “As Ontario’s largest electricity producer, our strong operational performance demonstrates the high quality of our diverse generating fleet,” said OPG CEO Ken Hartwick. He cited completion of the refurbishment of Darlington Nuclear Generating Station’s Unit 2 reactor in June as an “historic accomplishment.”

·         Read all about it: The summer issue of OPG’s PowerNews is now available on OPG.com. It showcases some of the 200 projects and initiatives underway at OPG. Also in this issue is a look at our continuing efforts to help fight COVID-19.

·         Virtual fireside chat: If you missed the live webinar in July, you can now watch the conversation posted at YouTube: OPG CEO Ken Hartwick talking with Rocco Rossi, of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, about clean energy’s role in the fight against climate change, OPG’s contribution to the economic recovery ahead, and more.