Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission renews the Western Waste Management Facility operating licence

News Release

May 30, 2017 – Ottawa

Following a public hearing held on April 12, 2017 in Ottawa, Ontario, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) announced today its decision to renew Ontario Power Generation’s (OPG) waste facility operating licence for the Western Waste Management Facility (WWMF), located in the Municipality of Kincardine, Ontario. The licence will be valid from June 1, 2017 until May 31, 2027.

In making its decision, the Commission considered submissions from OPG and 18 intervenors, as well as CNSC staff’s recommendations.

The Commission authorizes the proposed construction activities, with the requirement that OPG is to submit to CNSC staff an environmental management plan, construction verification plan and the project design requirements. In order for part of the new structures to begin operation, the Commission will have to accept OPG’s commissioning report. For more information on this hold point and the construction of new waste management facilities at the WWMF, please refer to the Record of Decision.

CNSC staff will report annually on the WWMF’s performance at a Commission meeting with public participation.

The Record of Decision is available on request from the Commission Secretariat. It will be posted in both official languages at at a later date. Hearing transcripts can be obtained on the CNSC website or by contacting the CNSC. The hearing webcast is available on the same site for 90 days following the public hearing.

The CNSC regulates the use of nuclear energy and materials to protect health, safety, security and the environment; to implement Canada’s international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy; and to disseminate objective scientific, technical and regulatory information to the public.

Quick Facts

  • The WWMF is located on the shores of Lake Huron, within the Municipality of Kincardine, Ontario. The entire site is owned by OPG, and in 2001 most of the site was leased to Bruce Power Inc. OPG remains the operator of the WWMF.

  • The WWMF is responsible for the safe handling, management and interim storage of low- and intermediate-level radioactive waste from the Bruce A and B reactors, as well as from the Pickering and Darlington nuclear generating stations. The facility also safely manages the used nuclear fuel from Bruce A and B along with refurbishment waste from Bruce A.

  • The WWMF has operated at the site since 1974, and facilities have been constructed to accommodate waste produced during reactor operation, maintenance and refurbishment.

  • The renewed WWMF licence authorizes the construction of new facilities, including storage buildings for low- and intermediate-level waste, in‑ground storage containers for intermediate-level waste, in-ground containers for heat exchangers and storage buildings for used dry nuclear fuel. The new structures will provide additional storage capacity for radioactive waste, as well as processing facilities to safely manage the waste. The operation of the new structures is subject to a hold point.


Aurèle Gervais
Media Relations
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
Tel.: 613-996-6860 or 1-800-668-5284

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