Nuclear waste dump within a mile of Lake Huron?

The Great Lakes Environmental Alliance fights back
Katie Hunckler
Staff Writer
Nuclear SignOntario Power Generation plans to place a nuclear waste dump in Kincardine, Ontario at its Bruce nuclear site. This proposed waste site is deep underground, yet within a mile of Lake Huron. The Great Lakes Environmental Alliance is fighting the proposal.
According to Kraig Archer, Chairperson of the Great Lakes Environmental Alliance and Sociology Professor here at SC4, the waste placed in this dump will remain radioactive for 100,000 to 1,000,000 years. The site is scheduled to store low-level and intermediate-level nuclear waste.
A very similar storage system was placed in New Mexico in 1999, but it met an unfortunate circumstance early in its life. “All these flames and smoke were coming out of the ground and radiating people, and this was only 15 years after it opened,” said Archer, who fears the dump on Lake Huron could face a similar fate.
According to Archer, 80,000 people in Ontario signed a petition against the dump, yet the three-member federal review panel still approved the plan. “The process hasn’t been very democratic,” he said. The final decision will be made on Dec. 2 by Federal Minister of Environment Leona Aglukkaq.
The Great Lakes Environmental Alliance is determined to stop the nuclear dump due to its potential threat to Lake Huron. The alliance meets the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m. in room 150 of the MTEC building here on SC4’s campus. In addition to trying to bring light to a 1906 International Waters Treaty which may give the United States a bit more power over the issue, the alliance hopes to acquire the support of many members of the public, as well as relevant companies and organizations. “(When together) people have a voice that they wouldn’t normally have,” said Archer.
“This is an amazing group. The community is coming together. We truly are building awareness to protect and preserve our Great Lakes,” said Monica Hudson, who does promotions for the Great Lakes Environmental Alliance. She isn’t kidding; the alliance’s Facebook group alone has over 1400 members!
The Great Lakes Environmental Alliance was born when Kraig Archer was on his way to work one day. Along his route, he encountered a lawn sign talking about the proposed waste dump. Archer stopped right then and there to knock on the door of the house that had the sign. Resident Rick Bradley informed him of the plans, and the two of them decided to take action. “That was very disturbing to me. I just feel like it’s a terrible idea,” said Archer about the proposed waste site.
As the Dec. 2 decision moves closer, the Great Lakes Environmental Alliance requests the help of more members of the public. Everyone is welcome to attend the meeting on Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. to see what it’s all about and decide whether or not to become involved.

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