CNA Responds to “Nuclear Aftershocks”

January 31, 2012

Last night, CBC’s The Passionate Eye, aired a re-broadcast of PBS’ Frontline documentary “Nuclear Aftershocks.” The doc asks: how safe are North American nuclear facilities?

The focus of the program was South of the border, and the Nuclear Energy Institute (our equivalent in the U.S.) did a great job of responding in two blog posts.

So, how safe are Canadian nuclear facilities?

Very safe. They’ve been very safe for 45+ years (as demonstrated by our remarkable safety track record).

But we NEVER rest on our laurels. Here’s what Canadian operators and the federal regulator have done to ensure the safety of our facilities post-Fukushima.

Soon after the disaster struck, nuclear operators in Canada launched a thorough assessment of their own systems and operations to confirm their safety. This included looking at back-up power systems and the ability of nuclear plants to withstand natural disasters that might occur here.

Last October, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission released the Fukushima Task Force Report. It concluded that all Canadian nuclear power plants are safe. It also said our plants are designed to withstand conditions similar to those that triggered at Fukushima. Still, it’s important for the nuclear industry internationally to share valuable lessons learned from the tragedy in Japan and ensure that safety standards and policies reflect current findings.

Nuclear power is very important for Canada’s future, as it is an energy alternative to fossil fuels. But power generation is only one of the many great things about nuclear power. Our nuclear industry provides a broad spectrum of products and services that benefit not only Canadians but people around the world. Nuclear science provides nuclear medicine and food safety technologies. Innovation in nuclear science is also being applied to address a number of societal challenges such as public health and transportation.

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