Montréal supports MRC-Pontiac, Gatineau: – 82 cities oppose Chalk River radioactive dump

0
150

Fred Ryan

Canadian Press reported, April 26, that the 82 member cities of the Montreal metropolitan community have unanimously adopted a resolution in favour of

Fred Ryan

Canadian Press reported, April 26, that the 82 member cities of the Montreal metropolitan community have unanimously adopted a resolution in favour of
supporting MRC Pontiac and Gatineau’s opposition to the radioactive dump upstream on the Ottawa River. The resolution also calls on the Quebec Union of Municipalities to oppose the project on its border and to support its member cities. The UMQ will vote on the question in mid-May.
The main reason for the solid front of opposition is the danger of leaks and of a wholesale break in the fabric holding the massive dump, proposed to be built between a pond and creek which flows into the Ottawa River, and the Ottawa River itself. Over six million people depend on the Ottawa River for drinking water, and the mayors claim the risk of contamination far outweighs any benefits offered by the untested and experimental fabric-enclosed stockpile.
The Montreal urban community, CMM, represents four million citizens, and their resolution had already been approved by the cities of Montreal, Laval and Longueil. MRC Pontiac and Gatineau Council had earlier voiced their opposition to the dump. Ottawa city council and its mayor last year declined to object to the
project, as did at least one nearby Pontiac municipality which fears the loss of almost 50 jobs if Chalk River’s facilities are shut down.
Earlier in the week in New York City, forty First Nations and environmental organizations asked the United Nations to intervene and investigate both the project and Canada’s general policy towards managing nuclear waste. They point out that the Chalk River project violates guidelines of the International Atomic Energy Agency, standards established by scientists from around the world.
“Nuclear and water are a bad mix”, commented the mayor of Lachine. The vote comes not long after the fourth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster, which is still not under control, despite major scientific input in the plans and design and the full resources of the Japanese government. Its clean-up costs could
cripple that nation’s economy, a point made by several mayors who see this experiment motived by a desire for a “quick fix” to the nuclear waste disposal problem.