Greenpeace Canada

Greenpeace Canada

March 10, 2005 10:30 ET

Greenpeace Protests Nuclear Industry Conference:

$38 billion bill for Nuclear Power Attention: Environment Editor, Energy Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor OTTAWA/ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - March 10, 2005) - Greenpeace activists today protested the national conference of the Canadian Nuclear Association (CNA) - Canada's nuclear industry lobby. The activists were dressed in mock-radiation protection suits, and handed out $38 billion "Nuke Bucks" to conference attendees.

$38 billion is the amount of past federal nuclear subsidies to Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) plus the expected cost of rebuilding aging nuclear plants in Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. In the government's February 23rd budget, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited was given a $99 million subsidy for the coming year - six times the $17 million provided for wind power. More subsidies are expected through supplementary estimates.

The nuclear industry claims it is on the verge of a renaissance, but Greenpeace says that nuclear power is a dead-end, taking the place of cleaner, safer and cheaper green energy options.

"The industry is hoping for a nuclear renaissance, but without massive subsidies it is heading for the dark ages" said Greenpeace Energy Coordinator, Dave Martin. "Nuclear power is dirty, dangerous and expensive. Green energy alternatives such as conservation and renewable energy are cleaner, safer and cheaper."

Greenpeace Energy Campaigner Shawn-Patrick Stensil said, "Nuclear power is a dead-end, with no hope of CANDU reactor sales at home or abroad. It's time to pull the nuclear plug, and build a truly sustainable energy future."

The nuclear industry is trying to re-package itself as "clean", but nuclear power has serious safety and environmental problems due to the release of routine and accidental radioactive emissions and the creation of radioactive waste.

Martin said, "Nuclear power is not clean or safe. Canada has 40,000 tonnes of high level radioactive waste that will remain toxic for the next million years."

The CNA conference was opened by Natural Resources Minister John Efford, and is being addressed by the leaders of Canada's most prominent nuclear companies.

- 30 -
For more information:

Dave Martin, Greenpeace Energy Coordinator
416-597-8408 X 3050 (in Ottawa March 9 & 10 by cell: 416-627-5004)

Shawn-Patrick Stensil, Greenpeace Energy Campaigner
416-597-8408 X 3013 (in Ottawa March 9 & 10 by cell: 416-884-7053

Andrew Male, Greenpeace Communications Coordinator
416-597-8408 X 3030 (cell) 416-880-2757 IN: ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, POLITICS

Contact Information