January 22 2009
Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. has signed a memorandum of understanding on next-generation reactors for India as the Canadian government closes in on a nuclear co-operation deal with the South Asian nation.
It’s a watershed moment for Canada, which angrily stopped nuclear co-operation with India in 1974 after the government used plutonium from a Canadian reactor to build an atomic bomb.
International Trade Minister Stockwell Day made the announcement Thursday from Mumbai, where he was wrapping up a four-day trade mission with some of the top CEOs of Canada’s nuclear industry.
At the urging of the United States, the international community agreed last September to lift the three-decade ban on nuclear trade with India — even though India still refuses to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
The end of the moratorium has sparked a global sales rush to the rising economic power, which wants to build 25 to 30 new reactors in coming years. It has also left nuclear non-proliferation advocates deeply uneasy.
“The signals we got very clearly from the government here is that there is room for Canada, there’s room for Canada’s industry and they want Canada involved,” Day said from Mumbai.
Indian officials are very interested in buying Canadian components, uranium and hazardous waste treatment systems, Day said.
AECL, the troubled Crown corporation that has recently undergone a privatization review by the Conservative government, signed a deal this week with a leading Indian engineering firm to start costing out Candu ACR-1000 reactors — the prelude to a possible sale.
A formal government-to-government agreement permitting international nuclear inspections must be finalized before any commercial deals are sealed.
“It represents a huge opportunity for Canada and for the Canadian nuclear industry as a whole, not just AECL,” said Dale Coffin, a spokesman for the corporation.
Day said he expects uranium sales from Canadian giant Cameco Corp., whose senior executives accompanied Day on the trade mission, could “move ahead very quickly.”
Just a couple of more reasons to remove the conservatives from power.
That coalition Government is looking better all the time.
Nuclear Reactors are not the way to go.
They are dangerous.
Wind energy or solar would be a better alternative.
A safer way to go as well.
Radiation is anything but safe.
Just because the US says it’s ok, does not mean it’s ok either.
If the US tells Canada to go jump off a Bridge, will they do that too.
Privatization I think not. This type of entity should never be in the hands of any private Company. Just goes to show how stupid, stupid really is.
India must also sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. I wouldn’t be to quick to give them anything until they do. They have already proven that they will not keep their word. Why would anyone give them a second chance considering they haven’t signed the Treaty and all.
Even Iran has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, India should too. Especially if they want Nuclear Reactors. Otherwise the agreement should be scraped.
Nuclear is not the way for any country to go. There are alternatives. Unless of course they want their cancer rates to increase.
So one has to wonder, who is in charge of Canada?
Canada or the US?