FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
PORT HOPE, ON - Uranium, arsenic, radium, and cadmium are discharging directly into Lake Ontario from the Port Granby "waste management facility." Not only is untreated leachate escaping from the site, but even the treated effluent is extremely toxic - and it is contaminating the open beach front on the Lake.
These discharges, along with evidence of erosion, tension cracks, and other threats to the hazardous waste sites stability have been documented by the Lake Ontario Keeper in a report issued today. The report, entitled Port Granby: Leaking radioactive hazardous waste site, compiles sampling and inspection results from official government sources and independent studies of the old dump, located 15 km. west of Port Hope.
The fact that this radioactive waste site is licensed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission does not exempt the responsible parties from complying with our environmental laws, said Lakekeeper Mark Mattson, who has been monitoring the site since 1997.
Mattson has provided copies of the study to Environment Canada officials, urging a full investigation into potential breaches of the Fisheries Act and the Migratory Birds Act.
More than 20 years ago, Port Granby was ordered to be decommissioned because Atomic Energy Control Board (AECB) staff were concerned about erosion. That order is now in abeyance and an agreement has been struck with the Municipality of Clarington to turn the once temporary dump into a permanent facility.
Port Granby has been a gaping wound on our Lake for decades, demonstrating the nuclear industries failure to even temporarily contain its wastes, let alone find a permanent, safe, acceptable solution, said Tom Adams, Executive Director of the environmental group Energy Probe and an investigator with LOK.
Adams concerns are echoed by local activist and chair of the Port Hope Environmental Advisory Committee (Citizen's Group), Chris Conti. Given the standard of care demonstrated by the nuclear industry, including its regulator, toward existing problems like Port Granby, why should we trust them with ongoing operations and long term storage of waste in our community?
The waste was deposited at the site between 1955 and 1988, but includes wastes left over from Port hope's extensive nuclear experiments and production activities dating back to the 1930s.
Mark Mattson, Lakekeeper
Lake Ontario Keeper: 416.568.6036
Chris Conti, Chair
Port Hope Environmental Advisory Committee(Citizen's Group): 905.885.0873
Norm Rubin Director, Nuclear Research
Energy Probe: 416.964.3761