Tag Archives: OPG

CNA2020

Getting to Net-Zero Emissions Using Nuclear: Canada’s low-carbon future

Ever wonder how Canada is going to reach net-zero emissions? Join this panel at CNA2020 as Ontario Power Generation (OPG) Senior Vice-President of Corporate Affairs Heather Ferguson, SaskPower President and CEO Mike Marsh, Bruce Power President and CEO Mike Rencheck, and NB Power CEO Gaëtan Thomas discuss how Canada can reach its low-carbon future with nuclear power.

image of Heather Ferguson
OPG Senior VP of Corporate Affairs Heather Ferguson

With over 20 years of experience in the resource development, energy and electricity sectors, Ferguson was previously the OPG’s VP of New Business Ventures, VP of Environment, and Director of Hydroelectric Business Development Group. She has a Master’s degree in Science from Queen’s University and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management.

SaskPower CEO and President Mike Marsh

President and CEO since 2015, Marsh first joined SaskPower in 1991 as an engineering supervisor before joining the corporate and financial services leadership team in 2001. In 2012, he became vice-president of operations and chief operations officer. Marsh holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and an MBA.

Bruce Power President and CEO Mike Rencheck

Rencheck joined Bruce Power as president and CEO in 2016. He was the deputy chief operating officer for AREVA Group (international) after being president and CEO of AREVA Inc. in North America. Before joining AREVA, he was senior vice-president and chief nuclear officer at American Electric Power. He is a professional engineer and certified senior reactor operator.

NB Power CEO Gaëtan Thomas

Serving as CEO of NB Power since 2010, Thomas is a loyal and lifelong employee of the utility. He has worked in all aspects of the business, including as vice-president of the nuclear, distribution and customer service divisions. Thomas earned a degree in electrical engineering from the University of New Brunswick.

The CEO panel will be held Thursday, February 27, from 14:00 to 15:00. Find the complete schedule at https://cna.ca/cna2020/program/.

To register for the conference, visit https://cna.ca/cna2020/registration/.

CNA2020

CNA Sponsor Spotlight: Ontario Power Generation

Ontario Power Generation (OPG) is proud to be one of the largest, most diverse clean power producers in North America. OPG is the largest electricity generator in the province, providing almost half the power Ontarians rely on every day. It is also one of the most diverse generators in North America with expertise in nuclear, hydro, biomass, solar and gas.

OPG also has expertise in isotopes. In November, it signed an agreement with Nordion (Canada) Inc. to expand the production of cobalt-60 to the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station. Implementing cobalt-60 production at the Darlington station will replace the capacity lost when the Pickering station ceases operations, and provide increased production to meet global demand.

OPG invests millions of dollars in local economies and employs thousands of people to maintain a modern, sophisticated energy fleet. It partners with local, environmental and Indigenous groups to improve the well-being of the communities in which it has sites.

Here are a few of the impressive numbers from OPG nuclear:

  • 5,728 MW in-service nuclear generating capacity (Sept. 30, 2019)
  • 2 stations, Pickering has 6 units and Darlington has 4 units
  • 34% of Ontario’s electricity supply comes from Pickering (14%) and Darlington (20%)
  • 50 years of experience safely operating nuclear facilities in Ontario
  • $89.9 billion into Ontario’s GDP just from the Darlington refurbishment project
  • 2024 end of commercial electricity generation at Pickering
  • 2055 Darlington operations after refurbishment

The Canadian Nuclear Association is proud to shine a spotlight on its CNA2020 Platinum-level sponsor, Ontario Power Generation.

OPG is the sponsor for the Thursday lunch and keynote speaker. Find the complete schedule at https://cna.ca/cna2020/program/.

To register for the conference, visit https://cna.ca/cna2020/registration/.

Uncategorized

Lessons learned from the Pickering nuclear alert

Sunday morning, an emergency alert was sent out across Ontario about an incident at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station. The alert was mistakenly sent during a routine test by the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre, which coordinates the government’s response to major emergencies.

The alert brought nuclear to the forefront, along with many misconceptions about Ontario’s largest provider of clean and reliable electricity. This is what we’ve learned.

The industry is prepared to respond in the event of an emergency

“OPG has a sophisticated and robust notification process in place that we would immediately follow in the unlikely event of an incident at the station,” Chief Nuclear Officer Sean Granville said.

Reporting to the Ministry of the Solicitor General, Emergency Management Ontario would manage the off-site response to nuclear emergencies. It would determine the appropriate level of public action based on the Provincial Nuclear Emergency Response Plan.

This 200-page plan, which was last revised in 2017, provides clear instructions to every municipality that has a nuclear station within its jurisdiction. Local police, fire and ambulance crews implement the emergency plans.

Each of the three nuclear stations in Ontario (Pickering, Darlington and Bruce) also has its own plan and world-class emergency preparedness group.

The nuclear industry has a rigorous regulatory regime

The nuclear industry has one of the most rigorous regulatory regimes in the world. All Canadian nuclear operators work with the Word Association of Nuclear Operations to achieve the highest possible standards of nuclear safety. They also work with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to promote the safe, secure and peaceful use of nuclear technologies. An IAEA report showed that Canada has established and maintains a robust and comprehensive nuclear security infrastructure.

As well, at any given time, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has dedicated inspectors onsite at each of Canada’s nuclear power plants. It performs thousands of inspections annually to ensure Canada’s nuclear generating stations are operating safely. In 2017, the CNSC awarded OPG’s Pickering and Darlington stations its highest safety rating.

Ontario’s nuclear generating stations provide clean and reliable electricity

In 2018, the Pickering, Bruce and Darlington nuclear stations generated 60 per cent of Ontario’s electricity. It was their power that allowed OPG to close its coal-fired power plants, significantly reducing the province’s greenhouse gas emissions.

On a lifecycle basis, electricity from nuclear power generates an average of 16 g of carbon dioxide equivalent per kilowatt hour. That’s more than hydro (4 g) and wind (12 g), but less than solar (22 g for concentrated solar power [CSP] or 46 g for photovoltaic [PV]). That compares to natural gas at 469 g/kWh and coal at 1,001 g/kWh.

In Canada alone, nuclear energy helps avoid 80 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year. That’s about the same as taking 15 million passenger vehicles off the road.

Located east of Toronto, the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station is one of the largest nuclear stations in the world. It operates six CANDU reactors. The facility has been safely and reliably providing Ontario with electricity since 1971.

Uncategorized

Moltex Energy pursuing SMR build in New Brunswick

The next generation of nuclear reactors is on its way in Canada.

Small modular reactors (SMRs) are a type of reactor that are smaller than conventional nuclear reactors. They can be built in factories and delivered to power sites and remote locations for installation at a low cost.

In Ontario, both Ontario Power Generation and Bruce Power are working with companies to develop SMRs.

And in New Brunswick, two companies signed agreements with NB Power and the Government of New Brunswick as part of an effort to build a manufacturing hub and potentially a second or even third reactor at Point Lepreau.

One of these companies is Moltex Energy.

At the recent Canadian Nuclear Society conference in Ottawa, Moltex Energy Canada Chief Executive Rory O’Sullivan spoke about the company’s efforts to have a stable salt reactor available before 2030.

“We signed the agreements with NB Power and the New Brunswick government last year,” he said.

There are now 10 full-time engineers at the Moltex office in New Brunswick, with five more expected to start in the fall.

“The main objective from the New Brunswick side is understanding our technology so they can eventually build a demonstration plant,” he said. “The long-term vision is to have New Brunswick as a cluster, to build a plant there and get the local supply chain engaged in the best position to sell components as we sell reactors around the world.”

Moltex’s reactor is an SSR, short for Stable Salt Reactor. It uses molten salt fuel in conventional fuel pins. The technology can reuse spent fuel from CANDU reactors at Point Lepreau. It can store heat as thermal energy in large tanks of molten salt that can be converted to steam to create electricity and be able to operate on demand.

In severe accidents the fuel can tolerate temperatures up to 1,600 degrees before it starts to boil.
“The concept of a meltdown doesn’t really apply,” O’Sullivan said.

Companies like Moltex are among those working in Canada to build the next generation of nuclear reactors that offer more flexibility to work with renewables in clean-energy systems of the future.

“All grids around the world need more flexibility as renewables grow and as grids change and you get more electric vehicle charging spikes,” he said. “We are not just developing a reactor that runs baseload all the time. We are developing a hybrid nuclear storage solution.”

“Nuclear is going to be part of a decarbonized future grid. Our way of getting there is trying to build a nuclear solution that operates as cheaply as possible.”

Uncategorized

Nuclear industry steps in after GM layoffs

General Motors plant in Oshawa, Ontario.

Ontario’s nuclear industry has reached out to help General Motors (GM) workers affected by the company’s planned closure of their Oshawa, Ontario, plant.

On November 26, GM announced that it would close its Oshawa assembly plant the end of 2019 as part of global restructuring. The closure would affect more than 2,500 jobs at the Oshawa plant.

The layoffs will have a major impact on the Oshawa economy.  According to Unifor, the union representing GM workers, every job at the Oshawa plant is tied to seven spin-off jobs in the community.

But just four days later, Ontario’s nuclear industry stepped in to let Unifor know that it would do what it can to ease the blow to the community and workers.

Bruce Power and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) sent a joint letter to the leadership of Unifor, expressing support for workers at GM Oshawa.

“Bruce Power and Ontario Power Generation recognize the role the auto industry and the Oshawa GM plant have played in Ontario’s economy for decades and we believe that we can play a part in keeping these highly skilled people in high-paying jobs in the nuclear industry,” the letter stated.

“Skilled tradespeople and skilled workers are one of our province’s biggest assets and there is a deficit being predicted in the Ontario labour market. Bruce Power, OPG and the Ontario nuclear fleet support employment and training opportunities for skilled workers.”

At over $25 billion, the refurbishment of Ontario’s nuclear power plants is the largest clean-technology investment in the country.

The refurbishment projects will put thousands of people to work and ensure economic prosperity for the province of Ontario for years to come.

“OPG’s Darlington Refurbishment Project and Bruce Power’s Major Component Replacement (MCR) Program are the two largest infrastructure projects in Ontario. We understand the value of a trained, skilled workforce for Ontario and we look forward to playing a part in keeping Ontario’s workforce employed,” the letter concluded.

CNA2019

Innovation in action panel at CNA2019

Left to right: Jeff Lyash, Gaëtan Thomas, Mike Rencheck

On Thursday, February 28, at 2:00 p.m., Jeff Lyash, Mike Rencheck and Gaëtan Thomas will take the stage at CNA2019 to discuss new nuclear, innovation in action.

Not everyone realizes the full range of climate and health solutions offered by nuclear technology. Many of these solutions flow from the operations of nuclear utilities. Refurbishment and Major Component Replacement are sources of highly innovative advances in environmental protection, clean energy generation, and life-saving medical isotopes. New Nuclear is innovative, relevant to society’s needs, capable, job-creating, and impactful.

Jeff Lyash is President and CEO of Ontario Power Generation (OPG)  Jeff was formerly the President of CB&I Power where he was responsible for a full range of engineering, procurement and construction of multi-billion dollar electrical generation projects in both domestic and international markets. He also provided operating plant services for nuclear, coal, gas, oil and renewable generation.

Mike Rencheck is President and CEO of Bruce Power. Over the past 30+ years, Mike has served in a number of roles and most recently was the Deputy Chief Operating Officer for AREVA overseeing its extensive Global capital portfolio of nuclear and renewable projects. Prior to this, he served as President and CEO of AREVA Inc. in North America leading its diverse nuclear services business in Canada and the United States with a workforce of about 5,000 people.

Gaëtan Thomas is President and CEO of New Brunswick Power. He is a committed industry leader and agent of change, driven by his deep connection to customer and employee grassroots.

His vision for NB Power includes a made-in-New Brunswick smart grid supported by customer-centric technology and a workforce aimed at creating a greener, more sustainable province. This plan, now in its fourth year, is helping to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, lowering costs and keeping customer rates low and stable.

For more information about CNA2019 visit https://cna.ca/cna2019/.