DON’T NUKE TO ! unfurled a stop sign banner at the intersection of Yonge and Dundas to remember the Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster and demand that Ontario drop its plans for new and rebuilt reactors at Darlington Nuclear Station.
The Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster took place in the wee hours of morning on April 26th, 1986 in the Ukraine. While operators were performing a scheduled test, Chernobyl’s unit 4 went wildly out of control causing a series of violent explosions that scattered radioactive materials all over the Ukraine, Belarus, Russia and large areas of Europe.
30km exclusion zone was established around Chernobyl effectively turning the host community of Prypiat into a ghost town. In all, around 350 thousand people were relocated to avoid the radioactive fallout of Chernobyl while health effects probably caused by the accident still haunt the surrounding area.
Darlington Nuclear Station, which is about is about 60km east of Toronto, is the proposed site of up to 4 new reactors and the rebuilding of 4 existing reactors.
Astonishingly, the Ontario Government is considering building a reactor that shares the fatal design flaw that contributed to the Chernobyl disaster. Like the RBMK reactor at Chernobyl, The CANDU 6 design suffers from positive reactivity, making it prone to violent energy excursions if the cooling systems are interrupted.
Reactors with positive reactivity no longer meet international standards for safety. And a serious accident at Darlington would cause no less then 465 thousand people to relocate, not to mention severe the portions of the 401 highway and CN, GO, and Via Rail lines that run north of the station.
With energy demand dropping in the province and a growing renewable energy sector, there is no good reason to build new or refurbish existing reactors in Ontario. Renewables, energy efficiency, and conservation efforts are the sharpest way to keep Ontario shining bright.
The way to acknowledge Chernobyl and Fukushima is to drop nuclear in Ontario.