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LETTER: Some questions on modular nuclear power

"Even rocket scientists contend with material and mechanical failure."

Regarding Alberta's decision to join Ontario, Saskatchewan and New Brunswick in developing nuclear reactor technology:

I am by no means an expert on nuclear power, and even less knowledgeable about modular nuclear power. I have questions that I hope will be answered by those that are.

Was there debate in the legislature regarding pursuing this?

Will the ministers make available ALL incident report histories from existing, and closed, plants?

What safeguards will there be in remote areas against wildfires?

In discussions regarding supplying power for oilsands, is there any catastrophic situation that would destroy our access to the resource?

What is the feedback from the bands that will live with these in their backyard?

These are just a few of my questions. I am hoping the government makes a “town hall” website available for questions from the public.

While not categorically opposed to this, I will not accept answers like “experts assure us.” Experts is often the name given to the salespeople who profit from this.

I will not accept “new technologies." We cannot do a 50/50 for a hockey game or have Canadians apply online for service without creating days of the week access with “new technologies.”

And having helped carry a coworker's body from the plant after a gas explosion, I know the computer tried continuously to close the valve prior to the explosion. Technology does not compensate for undetected flaws in manufacture.

Even rocket scientists contend with material and mechanical failure.

Alan Otway, Morinville


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