OPG in the Community – February, 2019

       Fred Kuntz

Still new: Please allow me to be, perhaps, the last to say “Happy New Year” to you – even though it’s February. This is OPG’s first Community Update message in 2019 to our neighbours across Bruce County, so it’s timely enough, I hope, to wish you all the best in the coming year. For our part, OPG commits to keeping you informed as the year unfolds about our activities at the Western Waste Management Facility (WWMF)and around the region. And as always, we welcome your thoughts, comments and questions.

Busy year ahead:  At the WWMF, located at the Bruce nuclear site, plans for 2019 include continuing work on developing new storage buildings, as envisioned in the current 2107-2027 operating licence, to add capacity for ongoing operations. The Nuclear Waste Management team also continues to work with the OPG Darlington Refurbishment team, as well as the Bruce Power Major Component Replacement Team, to help ensure good planning and implementation for the waste stream from both important clean-energy renewal projects. And while the WWMF incinerator is now returning to service after a series of upgrades last year, the team does have plans for further scheduled work on the incinerator in 2019, to continue to extend the service of this important tool for waste minimization. 

Ken Hartwick appointed CEO: OPG Board Chair Bernard Lord announced yesterday that OPG President and CEO Jeff Lyash is leaving the organization effective March 31 to take on another role. Lord also announced the Board has appointed Ken Hartwick, Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President Finance, as President and CEO effective April 1, allowing for an orderly transition. Under Hartwick, OPG launched Canada’s first utility green bond, expanded to the U.S. through the acquisition of Eagle Creek Renewable Energy LLC and initiated an energy storage partnership. Lyash, a United States citizen who moved to Toronto to assume the leadership of OPG in August 2015, said: “It has been a privilege to lead OPG over the past 3½ years. I am proud of what we have accomplished as a team.”

Around Ontario:

  • Nurturing skilled trades:  OPG and Durham College are celebrating the completion of the college’s first-ever Boiler Lab in Whitby. Funded by both the college and OPG, the new Boiler Lab will help ensure graduates gain real-world experience and knowledge from hands-on learning in an actual, operating boiler-room setting. The partnership “is essential in providing current and future staffing needs,” said Jeff Lyash, OPG President and CEO.
  • Ebb and flow: OPG and its partner, Moose Cree First Nation, are taking steps in 2019 to improve safety in a complex of dams along the Lower Mattagami River. The project includes adding new sluice gates to manage water flow more effectively.
  • Ahoy, boaters: OPG and New York Power Authority (NYPA) have launched a public safety detection and alerting system that will help around the International Niagara Control Works in Niagara Falls. The radar system is designed to help detect, track and identify recreational users who may be in danger due to hazardous conditions, whether through mechanical failure, disregarding warning signage or deliberate risk-taking.