Nuclear a star in the Clean Energy mix with documentary by Oliver Stone

John Peevers, Director, Community and Media Relations

Celebrated film director Oliver Stone’s documentary, Nuclear Now: Time to Look Again, made its Canadian debut at Toronto’s Hot Docs festival last month.

The film was co-written and directed by Stone, who is known for his long major motion picture career that includes Academy Awards for Midnight Express, Platoon and Born on the Fourth of July.

Stone is the latest to add his voice to a groundswell of support for nuclear that includes environmentalists, politicians and policymakers calling for a change of opinion. The film’s website says “Nuclear Now explores the possibility for the global community to overcome the challenges of climate change and energy poverty to reach a brighter future through the power of nuclear energy.”

A 2022 report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), titled Nuclear Power and Secure Energy Transitions, states that as an established large-scale low emissions energy source, nuclear is well placed to help decarbonize electricity supply, adding that extending nuclear plants’ lifetimes is an indispensable part of a cost-effective path to net zero by 2050.

While other parts of the world have either turned their back on the net zero benefits of nuclear power and are facing dire consequences (Germany going back to coal) or just now identifying the need to revisit plant closures (United States), Ontario has a head start in ensuring a clean-energy future through large-scale nuclear operation and refurbishment.

Bruce Power and its partners are advancing the province’s largest clean energy project with the Major Component Replacement (MCR) program to refurbish Units 3-8 over the next decade.

The first Bruce Power MCR outage in Unit 6 is on track for completion later this year and over the past month saw the substantial construction phase completed and fuel being loaded back into the core as return-to-service activities continue.

Unit 3 was taken offline March 1st for de-fuelling, with bulkhead installation and the Primary Heat Transport system ‘drain and dry’ as the next steps in the project prior to starting construction activity, which begins with major component disassembly later this quarter.

Bruce Power’s Life-Extension Program and MCR Project will extend the operational life of each reactor by 30 to 35 years and, as a result, help mitigate the predicted increase in greenhouse emissions intensity of the electricity grid, while also injecting $4 billion into the Ontario economy each year and supporting 22,000 jobs.

It’s clear on a local, provincial, national and international level that it’s nuclear’s time to shine under the bright lights in the fight against climate change as part of a clean energy mix.

To Stone’s point with his documentary, nuclear is actually a feel-good story.

Bruce Power was the Presenting Sponsor for Nuclear Now as part of the Blue Mountain Film Festival on June 3.