[Date Prev][Date Next]
[cdn-nucl-l] More on the Bruce Power + Cameco MoU
In Wednesday's Nat Post, anti-nuclear activist David Martin rebutted my own
letter, and he again ignored the fact that Canadian investment in nuclear
science and engineering has indeed generated benefits (e.g. useful and
measurable things like kWh of electricity, the manufacture and sale of
components for nuclear reactors or cancer therapy machines, person-years of
life extension for cancer patients, etc.). The way Martin describes it, the
$15.8 billion (HIS number) that has been spent by Canadian taxpayers on
nuclear sci & tech may as well have been flushed down the toilet. He claims
that nuclear energy is very expensive ("twice as expensive (full life-cycle
costs) as high-efficiency natural gas plants"), and therefore nuclear has
been of no benefit. If I produced electricity with a diesel generator, I
would generate negative things (pollution, high maintenance per unit
electricity, high fuel costs) but also benefits (kWh of electricity).
Anti-nuclear groups often tout that nuclear (everything) is uneconomic, that
no one wants to invest in it. This despite the recent surge in U.S.
investment in second-hand operating power reactors (increasing the reactor
prices). And the announcement yesterday by Cameco, that they wish to invest
in Bruce Power. Note how Cameco's share price increased due to the
announcement. Tom Adams, ardent anti-nuclear campaigner for his employer
(Energy Probe), is a big proponent of privatization, deregulation and
market-driven pricing. I presume he is delighted with the positive market
response to investment in nuclear energy.
From the Nat Post:
Cameco to pay $100 million for 15% interest in Bruce nuclear plant operation
SASKATOON (CP) - Uranium producer Cameco Corp. is taking a stake in a
significant customer with a deal with British Energy PLC to acquire 15 per
cent of the Bruce nuclear power development in southwestern Ontario.
The memorandum of understanding, announced Thursday, sees the big British
utility bring in a key new partner to run the Bruce power plant. Earlier
this year, British Energy struck a tentative deal running at least through
2018 to lease and operate the Bruce plants from Ontario Power Generation
Inc., formerly Ontario Hydro.
Investors welcomed the move, pushing Cameco shares 50 cents higher to cose
at $21.75 on the Toronto stock market Thursday.
To obtain its interest, Saskatoon-based Cameco, the world's largest supplier
of uranium, said Thursday it will invest $100 million over two years.
The Bruce development on the east shore of Lake Huron comprises eight Candu
reactors - four generating 3,140 megawatts and four out of service.
The memorandum of agreement with British Energy gives Cameco full
responsibility for supplyin the fuel to power the reaactors.
Bruce Power is assessing the feasibility of bringing back into service two
of the four Bruce A reactors. Cameco said that if they are restarted, the
Bruce nuclear power plants will consume 1.5 million pounds of uranium
concentrate and 600 tonnes of uranium dioxide conversion services per year.
Cameco, the world's largest uranium supplier, produced 17.4 million pounds
of uranium concentrate last year.
In addition to its $100-million two-year investment, Cameco said it "may be
called upon to provide certain financial guarantees" and will pay $42
million for Ontario Power Generating's fuel inventory.
Cameco expects the Bruce investment to have a positive impact on the
Saskatchewan company's operating cash flow and earnings after two years.
"This arrangement is an ideal fit with Cameco's strategy to grow profitably
in the nuclear industry," chief executive Bernard Michel said in a
"It also builds upon our strong position as a multi-sourced fuel supplier
able to draw on international marketing arrangements and on our world-class
British Energy operates 15 reactors in the United Kingdom, as well as three
in the United States in a joint venture, and claims "a successful track
record in adapting nuclear plant operations to the realities of deregulated
Two unions at the Bruce site, the Power Workers Union and the Society of
Energy Professionals, have been invited to take a five per cent stake in
Said Cameco's Michel: "Together with BE and the unions, we will deliver to
Bruce Power's electricity customers exactly what they expect: clean,
reliable and competitively priced electricity from a source which does not
contribute to greenhouse gas emissions."
Under the lease - which gives the Bruce Power Partnership an option to
extend the arrangement for 25 years beyond 2018 - Ontario Power Generation
retains responsibility for dealing with used nuclear fuel, waste management
and decommissioning of the Bruce reactors.
The lease is expected to take effect next summer.