Skip to content

Former prime minister Jean Chrétien part of secretive project to store nuclear waste in Labrador, emails show via CBC News

Marie-Maude DenisJacques TaschereauDaniel Tremblay  · CBC News ·

As borders closed and lockdowns hit last spring, a group of entrepreneurs and lawyers had something else on their minds: setting up a facility in Labrador for international nuclear waste. 

Plans they had for a meeting in April 2020 with partners in Japan were foiled by pandemic-related health restrictions. 

The meeting was to bring together former U.S. government nuclear adviser Tim Frazier, Montreal business executive Albert Barbusci, as well as influential figures in Japan’s nuclear and public relations industries. 

Emails drafted in 2019 and 2020, obtained by Radio-Canada’s Enquête investigative program, reveal they were going to discuss a secretive project to bury nuclear waste from foreign countries in Labrador. 

Former prime minister Jean Chrétien was a player in the initiative. Another backer of the plan highlighted Chrétien’s ties to the current Liberal government and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Chrétien has acted as counsel for the project’s promoters, who are clients of his law firm, Dentons. 

In a letter Chrétien wrote in summer 2019 to an executive at a major Japanese public relations agency, Hisafumi Koga, he argues in favour of storing other countries’ nuclear waste in Canada and said he will help move the project forward.

“Canada has been the top supplier of nuclear fuel for many years, and I have always thought that it is only proper that Canada should ultimately become the steward and guarantor of the safe storage of spent nuclear fuel after its first duty cycle,” Chrétien wrote.

“I will arrange and participate in discussions in Canada, its provinces, and potential partner countries to move the concept of a deep repository in Northeastern Canada forward.”

Experts puzzled by secrecy

But some nuclear energy experts, who spoke to Enquête after reviewing the emails, question the safety of such a project and raise concerns around the lack of government involvement, and secrecy surrounding it. 

“I must say I was really stunned that there is a small group of very high-profile representatives … that are coming together to form this conspiracy,” said Mycle Schneider, an international consultant on nuclear energy based in Paris. 

Schneider, whose expertise is sought after around the world, said this type of project should be led by governments, not industrialists. 

“We are not talking about building a garage somewhere,” he said. 

“We’re talking about a highly complex project that no country in the world has so far successfully implemented and, you know, storing radioactive material.”

Schneider also takes issue with the group’s explicit wishes to keep their plans covert, considering “the dangers of the substances involved.”

The group wants to bury the imported nuclear waste in what is known as a “deep geological repository” or DGR. 


The site is similar to a mine hundreds of metres deep to permanently isolate highly radioactive waste, according to Ian Clark, a professor in the University of Ottawa’s Department of Earth Sciences.


Clark, the University of Ottawa professor, agrees the region’s geology makes it possible to find “good candidate sites if somebody wanted to embark on an economic venture to store nuclear waste from Japan.”

The island of Japan, on the other hand, is more prone to earthquakes and fracturing, making it “not an ideal place to find a nuclear waste site.”


Months after Chrétien’s letter to the Japanese PR executive, Hisafumi Koga’s response in September 2019 illustrates the secretive nature of the discussions. 

“As the success of the project hinges on the cooperation of all stakeholders, utmost care needs to be taken to keep the information from leaking,” Hisafumi Koga wrote, accepting Chrétien’s invitation for a meeting in Canada. 

“I understand that I’m attending as a private person,” Koga said. 

Takuya Hattori, who held senior positions at Tepco, the company involved in the Fukushima nuclear accident, was also to be part of the trip, according to the emails.

Koga and Hattori did not respond to Radio-Canada’s emails requesting comment.


Read more.

Posted in *English.

Tagged with , , , , .

8 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. dark web links says

    Getting rid of “dark web” links is a very difficult and time-consuming process. But what if I told you that there was a way to easily find out exactly which links on the Internet are pointing to a particular website? There are many people who have used link-targeting software to scan the links and reveal information such as who created the site, the date and time it was built, and even the IP address of the computer who created it. Now you can see why getting rid of “dark” web sites is so difficult – they have all sorts of links pointing to them! But with this new technology you can instantly see which links are broken or not working, so you know which ones you should be pursuing instead.

  2. Lock Repair Tempe AZ says

    Thanks for sharing the post.. parents are worlds best person in each lives of individual..they need or must succeed to sustain needs of the family.

  3. Muds Management says

    Nice one, its correct that nuclear waste needs to be disposed off in the right manner like in companies the increasing bad debts are also necessary to be disposed off when they become irrecoverable from the debtors.

  4. rhino 6 crack says

    Rhinoceros Crack is widely used as a 3D design program. It uses 3D design alternatives developed to deliver users the best, professional, and best outcomes. rhinoceros crack license key

  5. adobe photoshop cc crack says

    webroot secureanywhere antivirus key crack license is the latest protection package for a much better security policy on your Windows computer. You can find impressive features integrated into this article. webroot key is a lightweight antivirus that protects your device from virus-like threats through cloud-based protection. free webroot keycode delivers cloud-based security technology.

Continuing the Discussion

Some HTML is OK

or, reply to this post via trackback.