OTTAWA, June 13 — In an effort to revive a nuclear energy program that has been marred by billions of dollars in debt, cost overruns and disappointing performance, the province of Ontario on Tuesday announced a plan to spend about 20 billion Canadian dollars ($18 billion) to build reactors and refurbish some current units.
The plan also includes about 20 billion Canadian dollars for renewable energy projects and 6 billion Canadian dollars ($5.3 billion) for power conservation.
They will spend big money on renewables and conservation as well. Yet in spite of putting up big money for these purposes they obviously do not think big efforts in those areas will solve all their energy problems. So they were faced with a choice between coal and nuclear.
At least 2 new nuclear power plants will be built.
The project will initially involve at least two units at a cost of about 2 billion Canadian dollars each. But that number is expected to rise after an analysis by the government-owned Ontario Power Generation on the feasibility and cost effectiveness of renewing current stations.
The $2 billion Canadian is about $1.8 billion in US Dollars per reactor.
I've stated we face a choice between coal and nuclear. The Ontario government decided they faced that choice and they chose nuclear power. The Ontario government has decided to move away from coal.
Energy Minister Dwight Duncan directed the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) today to proceed with its recommended 20-year electricity supply mix plan, with some revisions.
The plan achieves a healthy balance by moving away from coal in favour of new nuclear power and renewable energy. The government has set targets that will double energy efficiency through conservation and double the amount of energy from renewables by 2025.
The government has directed Ontario Power Generation (OPG) to undertake feasibility studies for refurbishing units at the Pickering and Darlington sites. OPG has also been directed to begin the work needed for an environmental assessment for the construction of new units at an existing nuclear facility. Nuclear is expected to continue to be the single-largest source for Ontario's electricity in 2025.
The Association of Power Producers of Ontario (APPrO) welcomed today's announcement on Ontario's supply mix, saying that they are confident the power generation industry can bring forward the kind of supply contemplated by the government, on time, on budget and for a reasonable cost, said APPrO President David Butters. He added that development of this new generation will mean billions of dollars worth of new investment and jobs in Ontario, bringing environmentally sustainable new technologies and innovation, along with new jobs and a host of economic opportunities.
I bet htis Canadian decision will have some influence on the energy debate in the United States and in Britain. The British press has been reporting that the government is shifting toward a more pro-nuclear stance.. The Ontario government decided they didn't want the pollution that more coal plants would bring. That choice will appeal to some people in the United States.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2006 June 13 10:14 PM Energy Policy|