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Ignace renews commitment to participate in nuclear waste burial site selection

During a council meeting this week, Ignace council members voted to renew their participation in the Nuclear Waste Management Organization's site selection process
NWMO Ignace office
file photo

IGNACE — Municipal council has passed a resolution to continue the town's commitment to participating in the site selection process for a nuclear waste deep geological repository.

At a meeting on Wednesday, Ignace's council passed a resolution that municipal officials said "fully supports continuing with this process, but also ensuring that the public and a full Council will have ample opportunity to participate in any final decision and position in the future."

A press release was issued on Thursday announcing the passing of the resolution.

“It is extremely important that we as Council not miss the opportunity to continue to participate in this process with [the Nuclear Waste Management Organization], as the timelines for commitment are tight, but we also recognize that any final decisions around our participation require full Council debate and approval as well as intense and paramount consideration and participation from the entire community,” said Ignace interim mayor Kim Baigrie in a statement.

Baigrie also said the Nuclear Waste Management Organization's site selection decision is an undertaking that involves transparency, discussion, and debate from a full council. The current Ignace council only has three of the five seats filled, following the resignation of former Mayor Bill Gascon and former councillor Al Zimmer in April.

“[NWMO] also understand that at some point in the future, a full council discussion, debate, and approvals are necessary after extensive consultation with the community,” Baigrie continued.

The release said the resolution ensures that the current council is fully supporting the site selection process, while, at the same time, the final decision is made after council vacancies are filled and a full council can engage with the public’s willingness to participate.  

Council has also appointed Andrew Sprunt as a special advisor to the project, according to the release.

“The Township of Ignace is presently in the process of completing its obligations under a multi-year agreement, currently in year 2, with the NWMO and further discussions on year 3 are continuing,” said Coun. John Taddeo.

Ignace also announced that they intend to reach out to “the public for definitive feedback” shortly, The public input will feedback will be provided to council following July 17, when the two vacancies are expected to be filled, so council “can make fully informed decisions regarding the commitment of the community in this DGR project.”

Clint Fleury

About the Author: Clint Fleury

Clint Fleury is a web reporter covering Northwestern Ontario and the Superior North regions.
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