Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

Ontario approves refurbishment of the Pickering generating station

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The Pickering nuclear power plant was commissioned in 1971. (Archive photo)


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The Ontario government will announce Tuesday that it supports the refurbishment of four reactors at the Pickering power station, east of Toronto, Radio-Canada has learned. The refurbishment is subject to approval by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC).

The province explains in a press release that the refurbishment of these reactors will allow the production of safe, reliable and clean electricity for an additional 30 years. The press release obtained by Radio-Canada will be released by the Ministry of Energy on Tuesday.

Minister of Energy, Todd Smith , will announce the renovation project on Tuesday in Pickering.

The government does not, however, specify what the total cost of the renovation project will be. For comparison, the state-owned Ontario Power Generation (OPG) will spend nearly $13 billion to renovate four reactors at the Darlington power station.

OPG will now proceed with the initiation phase of the refurbishment project until the end of 2024. This phase, which will cost the company $2 billion OPG, will consist of carrying out design and engineering work.

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The state company estimates that it will be able to complete the work refurbishment in the mid-2030s.

The refurbishment of the reactors is necessary if the province wants to operate the plant beyond September 2026.

The Pickering Generating Station has six CANDU reactors in operation providing approximately 14% of the province’s electricity.

Reactors 1 and 4 will cease operating at the end of 2024. As for reactors 5 to 8, Ontario has asked the CCSN to be able to keep in operation until September 2026, before their future complete renovation.

The CNSC has not yet approved the extension of operations until 2026. This request requires the holding of a public hearing, the date of which has not yet been established by the federal agency.

The request for approval of the reactor refurbishment project from the commission is different from that for the extension of operations.

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Ontario also wants to expand the Bruce Power nuclear power plant.

Ontario has already announced its intention to build a third nuclear power plant on the land of the Bruce Power plant. The province also wants to see three new small reactors built on the grounds of the Darlington generating station.

Nuclear provided about 54% of the electricity used in Ontario in 2022, according to data from the Independent Electricity System Operator. This is a decrease of about 6 percentage points from 2020.

With information from Mike Crawley of < /em>CBC

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