History of Nuclearization of Saskatchewan
CFCR 90.5 FM Making the Links interview series with Don Kossick. This is a 3 part series on the History of Nuclearization of Saskatchewan with noted environmentalist Peter Prebble.
Part 1 focuses on the link between uranium mining and nuclear weapons. How the Beaverlodge mine near Uranium City and the Gunnar mine on the north shore of Lake Athabasca were developed to supply the US atomic weapons industry.
Listen to Part One
Part 2 focuses on the risks associated with nuclear power.
Listen to Part Two
Listen to Part 3.
Listen to Part Three
See a complete description of the program:
NUCLEAR REACTORS FOR SASKATCHEWAN?
The Saskatchewan Government's intention is to use taxpayer dollars to research and
build small modular nuclear reactors (SMRs) in Saskatchewan.
NOT CLEAN! All nuclear reactors create toxic radioactive waste. Everything - "spent" fuel
bundles, the reactor vessel, all metallic components and the concrete structure ultimately
become radioactive waste.
NOT GREEN! Calling SMRs, or any other nuclear reactor, "green" ignores the massive
footprint of greenhouse gases created in mining, milling, fuel fabrication, reprocessing,
enrichment, transportation, decommissioning, and waste management. Routine radioactive
pollution and toxic chemical effluents are emitted all along the nuclear fuel chain.
NOT SAFE! Emissions from the nuclear fuel chain, including from reactors, can negatively
impact human health. High level nuclear waste contains numerous man-made fission products,
some fatal to humans within minutes of unshielded contact. Nuclear reactor accidents
contaminate the land, air & water.
NOT HEALTHY! All nuclear reactors routinely discharge radioactivity into the air and water.
The KiKK study in Germany found that leukemia in children increased the closer a child lived to
a nuclear power plant. Other studies indicate that neonatal deaths and cancers at all ages
increase in the vicinity of nuclear power plants.
NOT SMALL! While internet images show a single module of a reactor on a truck, they do not
depict a full SMR power facility. With the infrastructure – containment building, exclusion zone,
shielding, steam generator, turbine, etc. it would be as large as any medium sized power plant.
NOT LIKE HOUSEHOLD GARBAGE! Nuclear reactor waste has been produced in Canada
since our first experimental ZEEP reactor in 1945, 75 years ago. But Canada has still not
established a permanent method for safely dealing with the waste. "Recycling" or
"reprocessing" is not what it sounds like - even more toxic solid & liquid waste byproducts are
created. "Recycling" or "reprocessing" nuclear waste to create plutonium-based fuel for SMRs
produces even more toxic solid & liquid waste byproducts and make it even more difficult to
prevent proliferation of nuclear weapons.
NOT NECESSARY! In addition to combined-cycle natural gas plants in the near term,
Saskatchewan can meet its energy needs by increasing sustainable & renewable energy
strategies & technologies including: conservation, wind, solar, geothermal, hydroelectric
imports from Manitoba, run-of-the-river hydro systems, and others.
NOT COST-EFFECTIVE! All types of nuclear reactors have historically cost much more than
their initial estimates. Nuclear's capital costs continue to increase dramatically while renewable
energy costs are declining, as noted in an updated August 2020 report from the U.S. Energy
Information Administration (EIA). Investing in renewables create more jobs, and produces
energy sooner at less cost.
NOT ACCEPTABLE! For all of the above reasons and more - small modular
nuclear reactors are not a viable choice for Saskatchewan. Let's not saddle taxpayers, present
and future, with this speculative, untested, untried, risky, expensive, non-competitive and
PDF & references
The Inter-Church Uranium Committee is founded on three principles from Judaeo-Christian teachings:
"Thou shalt not kill."
"Blessed are the Peacemakers."
"Humanity cannot live on bread alone."
These principles lead us to a respect for all life, a desire to build a just, peaceful and ecologically sound world, and a belief that social well-being must be measured, not only in terms of outward, quantitative, material growth, but also in terms of inward, qualitative, moral and spiritual growth.
We acknowledge, with sorrow, that Saskatchewan mines some twenty-five to thirty percent of the world's uranium, and that, from here, our uranium goes forth to fuel the world-wide nuclear energy and weapons complex.
Based on our desire for peace, ecological wisdom and human health and well-being, our organization stands in opposition to uranium mining in Saskatchewan and to the uranium/nuclear industry around the world.