Summer 2021 update on Near Surface Disposal Facility project

As work continues on both the environmental and licensing assessments for the Canadian Nuclear Laboratories’ (CNL’s) proposed Near Surface Disposal Facility (NSDF) project in Deep River, Ontario, the CNSC continues to provide regular updates on the project.

Where are we now

CNL resubmitted a revised final environmental impact statement (EIS) and supporting documentation in May 2021. On July 2, 2021, CNSC staff completed their review of this submission and determined that the information provided is complete, and as such, the final EIS was deemed acceptable. The EIS and supporting documents have now been posted on the Public Registry website. On July 8, 2021, CNSC staff deemed all environmental assessment and licensing application documentation acceptable, and notified the CNSC Commission Secretariat, which will now proceed with scheduling public hearing dates.

Next steps

CNSC staff are developing an environmental assessment report and a licensing Commission member document in preparation for the public Commission hearings. These documents will summarize staff’s technical assessments, findings, and recommendations to the Commission for decisions on the environmental assessment and licensing. Participation by Indigenous groups and members of the public is important to the Commission hearing process. Details on how to get involved will be provided once Commission hearing dates are scheduled.

Outreach

CNSC staff completed a series of webinars this past spring, that included topics relevant to the NSDF project. The series provided a general overview of the CNSC’s licensing process and included topics such as technical assessments, waste classification and characterization, and compliance verification.

Since then, CNSC staff have planned a subsequent webinar series for the fall of 2021, based on participant feedback during the spring webinar series. The fall webinars include topics such as transport of radioactive waste, long-term safety of disposal facilities, protection of people and the environment, and the CNSC hearing processes.

For more information on the fall 2021 series and to register, please visit the CNSC’s webinar web page.

Addressing feedback

CNSC staff are working to implement the following actions in response to comments received from the spring webinar participants:

  • Recordings of the spring series will be publicly available in the fall of 2021.
  • Recordings of the fall webinar series will be publicly available shortly after the live webinar sessions take place.
  • CNSC staff will include more specific examples and pictures to better illustrate processes/concepts in future webinar presentations.
  • Staff also suggested that participants visit the CNSC Indigenous engagement web page and consult REGDOC-3.2.2: Indigenous Engagement, for more information on how the CNSC conducts consultation and engagement processes when Indigenous rights or interests could be impacted by a potential project.

To receive notifications and information from the CNSC about upcoming webinars, and be the first to know about the upcoming hearings, please sign up on the subscriber web page.

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