Local input key to developing environmental monitoring program in South Bruce

Environmental monitoring is an important part of the preliminary work to establish a site specific environmental baseline program at a potential deep geological repository site. Joanne Jacyk, Section Manager for Environmental Assessment with the NWMO recently spoke to the South Bruce Community Liaison Committee (CLC) about the importance of incorporating local knowledge in co-designing a shared environmental baseline monitoring program.

“Community input and feedback is the most important input in the creation of this program,” explained Ms. Jacyk. “By incorporating local knowledge we hope to better understand the current stressors on the local environment and ensure we understand what makes the local environment unique while taking local concerns into account into the development of the environmental baseline monitoring program.”

The environmental monitoring program will identify future areas of study and monitoring that will be conducted around the potential repository site, the surrounding region, and will include monitoring of environmental features like water, air, soil, plants and animals.

Jacyk also highlighted additional opportunities for residents to get involved and ensure the program reflects their priorities and concerns.

“Participation is a great way to get involved in Canada’s plan and shape a deeper understanding of the environment at a local level. The input and feedback from residents will be incorporated into the initial design for the environmental baseline

monitoring program that will be shared with residents later this year, noted Jacyk. “There will also be future opportunities for residents to get involved in training programs and actively take part in sample collection.”

In August, the NWMO held a series of virtual workshops. Now that municipal facilities have re-opened the NWMO will be hosting small in-person workshops on the following days:

September 21, 2020 7:00pm – 9:00pm Mildmay Community Centre
September 22, 2020 9:00am – 11:00am Formosa Hall
September 22, 2020 7:00pm – 9:00pm Teeswater Community Centre

South Bruce residents are encouraged to register for an upcoming workshop by contacting Cherie Leslie at (519) 955-2251 or by email at cleslie@nwmo.ca. In line with recommendations from the Grey-Bruce Health Unit, all participants are required to wear face coverings and maintain proper physical distancing.

The Municipality of South Bruce is one of two communities currently involved in the site selection process for a deep geological repository for Canada’s used nuclear fuel.