As Canadian officials inch closer to a decision on an underground nuclear waste facility near Lake Huron, opposition in the Mitten is gaining strength.
At least 76 communities in Michigan have formally opposed the proposed facility for low- and intermediate-level waste. The Ontario Power Generation facility would house about 7 million cubic feet of waste and be located about 2,200 feet below ground — about 0.6 miles from the shore of Lake Huron in Kincardine, Ontario.
More than 30 of the communities opposed to the waste facility are in St. Clair and Sanilac counties.
In September, the Canadian Joint Review Panel — a group established by the federal Ministry of Environment and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission — had a nine-day public hearing to discuss OPG’s plans for the deep geologic repository.
It was the second round of hearings on the subject. The first 25-day hearing was in fall 2013.
The resolutions would create a Great Lakes Protection Radioactive Waste Advisory Board, and ask for an investigation into the plans by the International Joint Commission and the Great Lakes Commission.
The state legislators have asked U.S. leaders to engage the 1909 Boundary Waters Treaty, which would require the U.S. and Canada to study OPG’s proposal and issue a binding decision.
Pavlov also testified during the Joint Review Panel hearings in September.
In a statement, Pavlov said he was encouraged to see the different communities that had adopted resolutions to oppose OPG’s plans.
“Local communities are overwhelmingly opposed to this proposed facility, and for good reason,” Pavlov said. “Ontario Power Generation’s plan to permanently bury radioactive waste less than a mile from Lake Huron presents a critical threat to the health of the entire Great Lakes region.”
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