Canada to Restart Aging Nuclear Power Plants

Despite US concerns over nuclear safety, Canadian firms rush to put idled plants back online.

Published: 13-Feb-2002

NEW YORK, Feb 12 (Reuters) - While U.S. critics of nuclear power cite heightened security risks following Sept. 11 as yet another reason to shut reactors, Canadian energy companies are rushing to revive their own aging reactors.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission in November ordered heightened security measures at Canadian plants. While Canadians are also concerned about nuclear waste and safety, they believe nuclear power's benefits outweigh its drawbacks. Nuclear plants are seen as relatively inexpensive and cleaner than coal or gas-fired plants, whose emissions are blamed for acid rain and global warming.

Over the next two years, two Ontario companies -- Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and Bruce Power -- plan to restart six reactors idled between late 1997 and 1998 for costly upgrades to boost performance and safety.

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