OPG opens centre to support sustainable decommissioning

26 October 2020

Ontario Power Generation (OPG) has officially opened its Centre for Canadian Nuclear Sustainability (CCNS) Innovation and Collaboration Space in Pickering in Ontario's Durham Region. The regional hub will integrate collaboration and research to strengthen Ontario's supply chain for nuclear decommissioning.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the official opening of the CCNS innovation hub (Image: OPG)

OPG announced the launch of the CCNS in July this year to support preparations for the decommissioning of the Pickering nuclear power plant. With participation from the wider industry, the centre will work to advance solutions for nuclear materials, with an emphasis on minimising its environmental footprint.

"The CCNS is looking forward to collaborating with the City of Pickering, Town of Ajax, Region of Durham and a wide array of other community and industry partners including the Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries, Candu Owners Group, and academic institutions such as Ontario Tech University, Durham College and the University Network of Excellence in Nuclear Engineering," OPG said on 23 October. It added that Kinectrics, EnergySolutions and SNC-Lavalin are now Ambassador Partners, who will collaborate and share innovation space at the new centre.

Collaboration efforts at the centre also include Industry Catalyst Partners, which to date include: Aecon, Aecom, Alithya, ATS Automation, Black and McDonald, BWXT Canada Ltd, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, Cavendish, E S Fox, Fluor, Framatome, Hatch, Laurentis, Nuclear Promise X, Nuvia, Promation and Westinghouse.

OPG President and CEO Ken Hartwick said: "Through this central hub, OPG will lead the nuclear industry and work with key partners to develop innovative solutions for nuclear decommissioning and materials. We will continue to demonstrate that nuclear power is clean energy and sustainable for the environment, industry, community and the economy."

Pickering's six Candu units are slated to close by 2024 as OPG progresses with its refurbishment of four units at the Darlington site which will enable those units to operate for a further 30 years. The first of the Darlington units to undergo refurbishment, unit 2, was reconnected to Ontario's grid earlier this year. While Pickering remains in active service, OPG says upfront preparatory work for the end of commercial operations will ensure the station is ready for eventual shutdown.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News