Rally held in Teeswater to push for a referendum on proposed DGR

Members of Protect Our Waterways, No Nuclear Waste held a rally in Teeswater on Saturday, October 23, 2021. (Photo by Steve Sabourin)

Residents in South Bruce will see a card in their mailboxes over the next week in regards to a push for a referendum tied to the proposed Deep Geologic Repository for used nuclear fuel.

Members of Protect Our Waterways, No Nuclear Waste held a rally Saturday in Teeswater, with the message ‘Our Risk, Our Choice’.

Michelle Stein is the chair of the group.

“We have always been asking for a referendum,” said Stein. “Because we believe a decision this large can only be made by the community.”

South Bruce council is expected to view a report about how to gage ‘willingness’ on November 9.┬áThat was put together by a consultant over the past year.

In the meantime, members of the group Protect Our Waterways, No Nuclear Waste will be busy.

“This coming week, every household in South Bruce should be receiving a post card in the mail,” said Stein. “It explains what exactly the petition states, it explains why we should have a petition, and it includes a tear-off that people can fill-in, sign and send back to us. We have many canvassers that will be going door-to-door.”

Also Saturday, the South Bruce Site Director for the Nuclear Waste Management Organization, Tareq Al-Zabet, released a statement.

In the statement, he reiterated that the goal is to select a site by the end of 2023 through a community-driven process. Adding the project will “only go ahead in a location that is safe for people and the environment and has informed and willing hosts”.

Al-Zabet also pointed out that the NWMO has a number of rigorous environmental, safety, and socio-economic studies underway “that will yield important data on the project for people, land and water”.

The results of those studies are expected to be released in 2022.

South Bruce and the community of Ignace in northwestern Ontario are the two communities that are involved in the NWMO process to build a Deep Geologic Repository for the country’s used nuclear fuel.