Canadian nuclear board considers Darlington license issues

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) will take up several issues concerning Ontario Power Generation’s Darlington nuclear complex during a public hearing Nov. 13-14 in Courtice, Ontario.

Heading the agenda will be the commission’s environmental assessment of OPG’s proposed refurbishment and continued operation of the Darlington nuclear station, which is located on the north shore of Lake Ontario in the Municipality of Clarington.

Darlington is a 4-unit station with a total output of 3,512 MW, according to the OPG website.

The other items before the commission include OPG’s application to renew the power reactor operating license until Dec. 31, 2014 and renewal of the Darlington waste management facility license.

The public hearing will be webcast live on the Internet via the CNSC Web site and archived for a period of 90 days.

OPG is seeking approval for the refurbishment of the four reactors at Darlington and their continued operation for 30 years. OPG is basically seeking an interim extension long enough to accommodate certain studies to support the 30-year license renewal.

Refurbishment will require that a number of major components in each reactor be inspected and serviced, including replacement as applicable, during a planned outage. The scope of the environmental assessment includes the construction and operation of two additional storage buildings at the on-site waste management facility to accommodate intermediate level radioactive waste from refurbishment and spent nuclear fuel from the continued operations.

The waste facility was developed for the processing and interim storage of spent nuclear fuel generated at Darlington. The waste facility license expires on April 30, 2013. OPG has requested the renewal of the operating license of the waste center for a 10-year period and authorization for the construction and operation of two additional storage buildings: one for intermediate level radioactive waste and one for spent nuclear fuel, both to accommodate the refurbishment project.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.