NB Power and the Government of New Brunswick are supporting proposals to build two prototype nuclear reactors in New Brunswick.
The nuclear proponents propose to “reprocess” used (irradiated) fuel from the Lepreau CANDU 6 reactor on the Bay of Fundy.
In Canada, reprocessing (extracting plutonium from used nuclear reactor fuel) has never been done commercially and never with CANDU fuel. Reprocessing makes the plutonium in used nuclear fuel more accessible, raising nuclear weapons proliferation concerns.
On Jan. 27, the Coalition for Responsible Energy Development in New Brunswick (CRED-NB) organized an international panel event address concerns raised about the nuclear reactor proposal.
The event, “Ending the Global Security Threats of Nuclear Power: Lessons from the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons,” took place five days after the UN treaty banning nuclear weapons came into force without Canada’s support.
Making a prohibition on nuclear weapons part of international law happened as a result of considerable organizing by civil society, requiring building new alliances between civil society and governments,
and using international law and institutions to drive change.
Panelists addressed the questions: can these approaches help tackle the strong but subtle link between nuclear power and nuclear weapons? How can we halt emerging programs to build so-called small modular nuclear reactors (SMRs) and finally end the reckless pursuit of nuclear energy programs worldwide?
The webinar featured four experts on the topic of nuclear reactors, nuclear weapons and the new treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons:
- Ray Acheson, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom
- Zia Mian, Princeton University
- David Lowry, Institute for Resource and Security Studies
- Gordon Edwards, Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility
The event co-hosts were the Canadian Environmental Law Association, Beyond Nuclear and the NB Media Co-op. Watch the video below (90 minutes).
The Coalition for Responsible Energy Development in New Brunswick (CRED-NB) is fighting for a nuclear-free renewable energy future.