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Tuesday, December 7, 2021

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    Biden pressed to stop Canadian nuclear waste storage near Lake Huron

    Washington — Bipartisan Michigan lawmakers are pressing President Joe Biden to talk to the Canadian government about stopping the proposal for a permanent repository for radioactive waste near Lake Huron. 

    U.S. Reps. Dan Kildee, D-Flint Township; Andy Levin, D-Bloomfield Township; and Peter Meijer, R-Grand Rapids Township, spoke out ahead of Biden’s recent meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, expressing their opposition to the plans. 

    “We are disappointed the Canadian government has proposed building a permanent nuclear waste repository in the Great Lakes basin, threatening the drinking water of more than 40 million people on both sides of the border,” the lawmakers said in a joint statement. 

    “We ask President Biden to work with Prime Minister Trudeau to ensure that no nuclear waste is permanently stored in the shared Great Lakes water basin.”

    The representatives pointed out the Canadian government opposed any potential sites for permanently storing nuclear waste located within shared water basins when the United States was investigating sites in the 1980s, noting the Americans ultimately chose another site “out of respect for our Canadian friends.”

    “Now, we urge our Canadian neighbors to extend us this same courtesy,” they said. 

    It was not mentioned in readouts of the Biden-Trudeau meetings this month whether the proposed repository was raised. 

    Canadian officials and others have noted that the U.S. has dozens of high-level nuclear waste storage sites along the Great Lakes. 

    The nonprofit Nuclear Waste Management Organization, which was set up by the Canadian government, is considering two sites for Canada’s first permanent nuclear waste facility — Ignace, Ontario, or South Bruce, which is within the Great Lakes basin.

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