South Bruce launches community consultation on willingness process

A community-driven process to determine how to measure South Bruce’s willingness to host a deep geological repository (DGR) for used nuclear fuel, was introduced to the Community Liaison Committee (CLC) and the public on Thursday evening, May 6th.

The Municipality has hired GHD Limited to consult the community on how residents would like willingness to be measured. Katrina McCullough, a Community Engagement Specialist with GHD, outlined the consultation process at the meeting.

In 2010, the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) began a process to select a site for a DGR for the long term, safe storage of used nuclear fuel. Out of the 22 communities that expressed interest, South Bruce and Ignace are the two remaining communities that the NWMO is considering for the Project.

While the NWMO is developing its willingness criteria for the two communities in the site selection process, locally, the Municipality of South Bruce and the Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON) are working independently to identify how they will each determine community willingness to host the project.  The GHD presentation focused solely on the South Bruce process.

Consulting the community on how Willingness is measured

Residents of South Bruce called for an independent process on how willingness is determined for the multi-billion-dollar Project.

“The community provided their feedback last fall, and we listened. Council values the input of our residents, and we revised the Guiding Principles to reflect what was shared with us,” said Mayor Robert Buckle.

The Principles, which guide the Municipality in their engagement with the NWMO on the Project, saw the addition of Principle 9, that states: “The Municipality will, in collaboration with community members, develop and establish an open and transparent process that will allow the community to express its level of willingness to host the Project.”

The GHD presentation on Thursday set this process in motion.

Beginning in June, there will be multiple opportunities for residents and ratepayers to express how they want their willingness to host the Project to be measured. Consultation will include virtual community workshops, an online survey, monthly drop-in Zoom calls, and one-on-one discussions with GHD consultants. Community organizations are also encouraged to invite GHD to meet virtually with their group to facilitate a discussion on this important topic.

Additional information will available on the South Bruce’s engagement tool, known as Switchboard ( Residents are welcome to provide feedback on to the proposed consultation activities to the GHD Willingness Study team.

For more on the detailed presentation, CLICK HERE