Dear Members of Council,
Further to my conversation with Ms. Fran Aird yesterday, I am writing to indicate that I am unable to attend tonight's Petitions and Delegations presentation by Jacques Whitford. Local resident Ms. Faye Moore will make a brief representation on behalf of Lake Ontario Waterkeeper.
As you are aware, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper made a presentation on March 2, 2004 to Council regarding the role a panel review could play during the SEU Blending Project environmental assessment. We wish to reiterate our support for the panel review this evening.
There is no more important time for Port Hope and Cameco than this moment. As we noted last March, the SEU project is one of the most crucial components of Cameco?s business plan. Their future success is inextricably linked to the Port Hope community. All that the public is asking for is an opportunity to participate in the decisions that will shape that future and the opportunity to share in its success.
There may be some confusion about what a panel review could mean for Port Hope. To be clear, the screening level environmental assessment is, by definition, a self-assessment. Members of the public and members of council have no legal standing to question the findings of Cameco?s experts, require that terms and conditions be applied to ensure the project is carried out safely, or engage in meaningful dialogue with decision-makers.
Tonight you will hear from your consultants, the public, and the business community about the history and the future of uranium processing in Port Hope. You will hear about fears and aspirations, about opportunities for the corporation and opportunities for the waterfront.
We urge you to hear their stories and to understand that all parties involved would benefit from a panel review. It is the only process that addresses concerns, fosters ambition, explores history, and creates opportunity for the whole community.
Good luck this evening.
President & Waterkeeper
P.S. We can be reached any time at our office: 416.861.1237.