Society of Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA)

Society of Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA)

October 11, 2013 10:30 ET

Chiarelli Comment Puts Ontario's Nuclear Industry at Risk

Off the cuff remark to cancel Darlington nuclear project before release of Long Term Energy Plan irresponsible say Society of Professional Engineers and Associates

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Oct. 11, 2013) - Calling Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli's response to questions by reporters that there will be no new build at the Darlington "serves as a warning that another Ontario tech company is at risk", Mike Ivanco, President of the Society Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA) criticized the Liberal government decision.

"Having the Minister rule out an important option before his own ministry's Long Term Energy Plan has been released is irresponsible," Ivanco said. "How can you credibly say that nuclear is the backbone of Ontario's energy supply and then announce that you won't look at that option for future development?"

Ontario currently receives over 50% of its electrical supply from nuclear reactors in Pickering, Darlington and Bruce. With scheduled retirement of Pickering plants that total could drop to approximately 30% in the coming years.

Over 30,000 jobs in a multibillion industry rely on the CANDU nuclear platform, most of them in Ontario. Candu Energy alone employs over 800 highly skilled engineers, scientists, technologists and tradespeople.

Ivanco pointed out that "Nuclear energy has been the major reason in the drop in Green House Gas (GHG) emissions from Ontario's electricity sector. It continues to provide some of the lowest cost electricity and has the highest level of reliability."

"The government's decision to not build replacement nuclear power, after the Pickering reactors are shut down, means that most of the lost electricity will be generated by burning natural gas. So after spending much of the last decade de-carbonizing the electricity sector, and reducing GHG emissions, they are going to re-carbonize it. How does that make any sense? Instead of investing in homegrown technology in a willing host community, which would employ over a thousand engineers and technologists, they would rather build gas plants that employ very few people, in communities that don't want them. After the fiascos in Oakville and Mississauga their fascination with this using this fossil fuel to make electricity is mystifying." said Ivanco.

The Society of Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA) represent engineers, scientists, technologists and tradespeople who work for Candu Energy in Mississauga, Ontario. SPEA members collectively represent the majority of Canada's nuclear power design expertise.

Contact Information

  • Michelle Duncan
    SPEA External Relations
    (416) 427-3525 (cellular)
    duncanm@spea.ca