LANSING—State Sen. Phil Pavlov responded on Friday to this week’s decision by Canada’s Deep Geologic Repository (DGR) Joint Review Panel to close their public comment period on whether to allow the construction of a proposed nuclear waste dump on the shores of Lake Huron.
The panel is expected to issue its report by May 6, 2015.
“I sincerely hope the Canadian government will adhere to their own standard set in the 1980s, when they asked the U.S. not to build a nuclear repository near shared, significant watersheds,” said Pavlov, R-St. Clair Township. “The Great Lakes are far too precious a natural resource to be put in harm’s way. I urge Prime Minister Harper and members of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission to continue the long history of U.S.-Canadian cooperation on environmental safety with regard to this issue.”
Pavlov addressed the panel in September regarding the dangers the nuclear waste facility would pose to the environmental and economic health of the Great Lakes Basin. He cited a 1986 statement by Canada’s secretary of state for external affairs, who expressed opposition to the U.S. Nuclear Waste Repository Program regarding “any development that could present a trans-boundary threat to the welfare of Canadians or the integrity of the Canadian environment.”
“Canada has set the precedent, and I am requesting you follow that precedent and find an alternative location for this DGR,” Pavlov said. “Ontario Power Generation’s proposal to permanently bury radioactive waste on the shore of Lake Huron is contrary to sound public policy and breeches the responsibility we are all obliged to carry out as policymakers within the Great Lakes Basin.”
In June, the Michigan Senate unanimously approved measures designed to halt construction of the Lake Huron facility while strengthening Michigan’s protection of natural resources against radioactive waste. Since then, more than 75 communities across Michigan’s Thumb region have passed official resolutions in support of the measures.
Pavlov continues to urge concerned residents to visit www.ProtectLakeHuron.com to sign a petition on the issue.