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Minister Corrects Statement Re: New Multipurpose Reactor

Posted at 06/18/10 - 10:07 AM

The Minister of Natural Resources was quoted incorrectly by a June 14 Ottawa Citizen article, as saying "the estimated $1 billion cost of a new reactor would be an 'irresponsible' investment."

In a June 18 news release, Cheryl Gallant provided the entire statement as follows:

"Canada has some of the greatest minds in the world and we are giving them the tools they need to diversify our sources of medical isotopes and reduce the production of radioactive waste. Canada pioneered the creation of technetium-99 from a nuclear reactor and we are now looking to a new form of production in Canada; one with the potential to create new scientific opportunities and new intellectual property. The Expert Review Panel noted that a research reactor has the lowest technological risk for producing a secure supply of isotopes but recognized that it was the most expensive and least economically viable option. Simply replacing the NRU would not develop the diversity and redundancy that the Panel believed were necessary for security of supply. The estimated $1 billion cost of a new reactor, which does not include the costs of associated processing facilities, and of which isotope production would only ever cover a small fraction, make such an investment irresponsible on the basis of isotopes alone."

This view is compatible with CREATE's vision. CREATE believes that an assessment of the benefits of the R&D missions will show that the costs of a new research reactor are justified. For example, knowledge gained from a multi-purpose research reactor would help Canada to safely extend the operating life of its power reactors and save Canada billions of dollars in electricity generation costs.

 

Author: CREATE
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