Society of Energy Professionals

Society of Energy Professionals

July 08, 2010 14:00 ET

Society of Energy Professionals Applaud Senate Action on Budget Bill

Attention: Assignment Editor, Business/Financial Editor, Energy Editor, News Editor, Tech/Telecomm Editor TORONTO, ONTARIO, MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - July 8, 2010) - Today's votes in the Senate finance committee which carved out sections that would have facilitated an unfettered sale of Atomic Energy Canada Limited (AECL), weakened environmental assessments and opened overseas mail delivery to privatization, are a victory for good process and good policy, said Rod Sheppard, President of the Society of Energy Professionals.

"These items do not belong in an omnibus budget bill," said Sheppard. "Each touches on discrete and enormously significant areas of public policy. They deserve to be considered individually and carefully before decisions are made. I want to thank and congratulate those Senate finance committee members who voted to safeguard process and help ensure good policy results".

Canadians need to be made aware about the potential sale and restructuring of AECL and its assets because there are few safeguards in place to protect Canadian jobs, thereby putting the Canadian nuclear energy industry at risk.

The federal budget implementation act, Bill C9, as it came to Senate, would have allowed the government to sell AECL assets with minimal scrutiny or public debate.

"We are very concerned that this sell-off is counter-productive and will potentially limit the growth of Canada's nuclear industry at a time when governments worldwide are looking for clean, reliable energy solutions and green jobs," Mr. Sheppard said.

Unamended, Bill C-9 would give the federal government unfettered power to sell off Canadian nuclear technology, putting thousands of high-paying, high-skilled Canadian nuclear-industry jobs at risk, he added.

"Canada has a wealth of nuclear expertise and knowledge that is renowned worldwide and we feel it is imperative that this technology - and the thousands of good jobs it creates - must remain Canadian." Mr. Sheppard said. "Poor decision making regarding any sale or restructuring of AECL would put at risk over 70,000 Canadian nuclear jobs. A decision of this magnitude should be made transparently, with the interests of Canadian workers being key to government decision-making."

Canada is poised to capitalize on the growing domestic and international demand for clean, reliable sources of energy like nuclear power. Countries that lead the way in developing these power sources stand to gain high levels of economic growth and job creation. Canada is well-positioned to prosper from the increased demand for clean energy globally because of the knowledge and skills of our nuclear workers and the high quality of our nuclear technology and domestic supply chain.

The Society of Energy Professionals represents over 8,000 employees in Ontario's electricity sector including engineers, scientists, supervisors and financial specialists. SEP's members work for Ontario Power Generation, Hydro One, Bruce Power, the IESO, the OEB, the ESA and other key electricity sector employers. Over 53 per cent of our members work in Ontario's nuclear industry. All of these members are involved in the operation and management of CANDU reactors (made by AECL).
/For further information: please contact Mike Belmore at (905) 308-4300/ IN: ENERGY, LABOUR, TELECOMM

Contact Information

  • Mike Belmore, External Relations Officer, Society of Energy Professionals
    Primary Phone: 905-308-4300
    E-mail: belmorem@thesociety.ca