“And we are -- and will be -- a better and safer industry after Fukushima, than before. That’s because when it comes to safety, we know that we have to be:
Feb. 23, 2012
Applying Lessons Learned in Response to Fukushima
"As a nation, Japan continues to rebuild from the physical devastation and tragic loss of human life and suffering inflicted by these forces. This includes responding to the irrevocable damage done to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, which was flooded by tsunamis soon after the earthquake struck. In the aftermath of this event, OPG and nuclear operators around the world have looked to Fukushima for answers and opportunities to improve."
Wayne Robbins, OPG Chief Nuclear Officer, March 8, 2012
CNSC Fukushima Task Force Report Concludes Canadian Stations are Safe
On Friday, Oct. 28, 2011, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) released its Fukushima Task Force Report and proposed Management Response for both CNSC staff and licencees. After reviewing the ability to withstand conditions similar to those that triggered the Fukushima event, the Task Force confirms Canadian nuclear power plants are safe and pose a very small risk to the health and safety of the public and the environment. It highlights that station designs offer protection against external events that have a very low probability of occurring.
“The CNSC, as the Canadian nuclear regulator, is confident about the safety of Canada’s fleet of nuclear reactors regarding seismic activity. The CNSC would like to reassure Canadians that nuclear power plants located in Canada are among the most robust designs in the world and have redundant safety systems to prevent damage in the case of an earthquake.”
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, March 12, 2011
Following the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, OPG immediately began working with the CNSC, and nuclear industry groups and facilities around the world. Also, OPG President and CEO Tom Mitchell was named Chair of the World Association of Nuclear Operators Post-Fukushima Commission. The 14-strong international committee will advise on how lessons learned can be applied by operators of all nuclear facilities around the world.
On May 27, OPG updated the CNSC on the findings of its comprehensive station inspections and records' reviews conducted between March and May. “Our station inspections and reviews are now complete and demonstrate that OPG nuclear facilities are safe, robustly designed, and will withstand emergencies,” says Wayne Robbins, Chief Nuclear Officer. "Minor items relating to equipment, procedures, or training that emerged during our inspections and reviews are now being resolved through normal work processes at our stations."
For up-to-date information on the situation in Japan and nuclear power generation in Canada, visit the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s website:
Updates are also available through the links below.
- International Atomic Energy Agency
- Nuclear Energy Institute
Canadian Nuclear Association
Natural Resources Canada Seismic Map
OPG Darlington Nuclear
OPG Pickering Nuclear
A number of expert studies have confirmed that south Durham Region has a low seismic hazard. Our reactors are robust in design and are able to withstand large seismic events. In fact the two most recent earthquakes had no impact on our operations.
Power stations in Canada are required to meet more stringent design standards than other buildings. OPG’s nuclear stations have redundant safety systems designed to ensure safe shut down without release of radioactivity in the event of earthquakes. Systems are in place to ensure:
- Reactor containment remains intact;
- Fuel cooling systems remain intact; and
- Reactors are maintained in a shutdown state.
While accidents are considered highly unlikely, we have well-planned and rehearsed emergency responses in place – these are coordinated with provincial and local emergency agencies and responders.
- Read Speech from Tom Mitchell, OPG President and CEO on responding to changing public expectations of nuclear safety (March 1, 2013)
- Read Summary of OPG's gamma monitoring as additional safety measure implemented following Fukushima (Dec. 3, 2012)
- Watch Video describing the additional safety measures OPG has implemented following Fukushima (June 27, 2012)
- Read Newsletter to neighbours on nuclear safety (spring 2011)
- View Presentation or read remarks given by Pierre Tremblay, Senior Vice President Nuclear Programs and Training at the Enercom Conference (March 29, 2011)
- Watch Video comparing Canada’s nuclear plants, a video interview with McMaster University’s Nuclear Safety Analysis team’s Dr. John Luxat (March 23, 2011)
- Read Article re. stations built to withstand earthquakes in Durham Region (March 15, 2011)
- Read Editorial from Tom Mitchell, OPG President and CEO (March 14, 2011)
- Watch Interview with Glenn Jager, SVP Pickering A on Discovery Channel's Daily Planet (March 11, 2011)
- OPG Letter to Community Stakeholders (March 8, 2012)
- OPG update letter to CNSC (Feb. 3, 2012)
- OPG update letter to CNSC (Sept. 15, 2011)
- OPG update letter to CNSC (July 28, 2011)
- OPG update letter to CNSC (May 27, 2011)
- OPG letter to CNSC on the status of the CNSC request (April 28, 2011); also read OPG's press release
- Update from President and CEO Tom Mitchell on the events in Japan (April 19, 2011)
- OPG response to CNSC on general nuclear safety and control regulations
- Letter from Energy Minister Duguid on nuclear safety
- OPG and Bruce Power respond to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission outlining a series of actions to verify the safety of Ontario’s nuclear generating stations (March 18, 2011)
- An open letter from Chief Nuclear Officer Wayne Robbins (March 14, 2011)
- Background Info
- How a Nuclear Plant Works
- OPG on Safety
- CNSC Video on Emergency Preparedness
Any general inquiries can be directed to:
- 416-592-4008 or 1-877-592-4008 (Ontario only) available 24/7 to assist members of the media
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Twitter: @OntarioPowerGen
- YouTube: OPGVideos
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