The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) of Canada has narrowed it down to two options for a nuclear waste storage facility, one of which is on Lake Huron. U.S. Sens. Debbie Stabenow (D-Lansing) and Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.) are concerned about the environmental impacts.
The facility will either be built in southern or northwestern Ontario after narrowing down possible locations from 22 municipalities and Indigenous communities, NWMO said in a news release. The potential site on Lake Huron is Huron-Kinloss/South Bruce in South Ontario. The other is in Ignace in Northwest Ontario.
Safety is a primary focus, according to the vice president of site selection at the NWMO, Dr. Mahrez Ben Belfadhel.
“These are hard decisions and not made lightly, but ultimately, we are working towards identifying one area where we can implement Canada’s plan to ensure the protection of both people and the environment,” Belfadhel said.
Stabenow said she hopes that the Canadian government can understand the concerns of Michiganders.
“This makes no sense. Canada has as much at stake as we do in protecting our Great Lakes,” Stabenow said. “There is no justification for a nuclear waste site so close to Lake Huron to even be under consideration.”
The Great Lakes provide drinking water to over 40 million people and must be protected for future generations’ welfare, Peters said.
“I am extremely concerned about the possibility of hazardous nuclear waste being stored near the Great Lakes,” Peters said. “Any accident could have catastrophic and long-term consequences to the health and well-being of Michigan and the country.”