Chalk River Employees Ad hoc TaskforcE for a national laboratory (CREATE)

February 03, 2011 15:56 ET

CREATE Encourages Co-operation Over AECL

CHALK RIVER, CANADA--(Marketwire - Feb. 3, 2011) - In response to recent news about the reported halt in negotiations over the sale of the reactor vendor business component of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), the grass-roots, non-partisan organization CREATE (Chalk River Employees Ad hoc TaskforcE for a national laboratory) has issued the following statements:

CREATE strongly encourages all stakeholders in the negotiations, including the Federal Government, the bidders and the Government of Ontario to refocus and to work out compromises that will allow an acceptable sharing of risks and rewards for both government and private business.

Although the restructuring of AECL is a complex process with many issues to be worked out in negotiations, it is vital that it be completed as quickly as possible. Continuing uncertainty subjects Canada's entire nuclear industry and nuclear R&D capability to increasing risk.

A large number of our experienced nuclear scientists, engineers, technologists and trades are approaching retirement. Without a promising future, this expertise could be lost, leaving a significant knowledge and skills gap. This risk could be compounded further by the inability to attract and retain the next generation of highly qualified people to support the sector. Existing younger staff may seek more stability and opportunities in other industries, or in countries that are clearly committed to the nuclear renaissance.

CREATE believes that the Chalk River Laboratories (CRL), with the potential to be a multi-disciplinary national laboratory, is an essential resource for the future success of the Canadian nuclear industry, which would include a competitive Canadian vendor of nuclear reactor technology.

CREATE has proposed a future mission for the CRL as an international centre of excellence for research and development and innovation in science and technology. Building on its traditional strengths, experience, and infrastructure in the nuclear sciences, the Chalk River Laboratories can enable Canada to thrive and contribute significantly to the nuclear renaissance, and in other areas of national importance.

For more information on CREATE and its vision, visit www.futurecrl.ca.

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