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Amendment of the Operating Licence for Saskatchewan Research Council's Safe Low-Power Kritical Experiment Reactor (SLOWPOKE-2)

June 2019

Executive Summary

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) conducts environmental protection reviews (EPRs) under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSCA) for all projects, in accordance with its mandate, to ensure the protection of the environment and health of persons. An EPR is a science-based environmental technical assessment by CNSC staff as set out in the NSCA. The safety component of the CNSC’s mandate is covered in the safety case assessment carried out for all projects.

This EPR report, written by CNSC staff for the Commission, Indigenous peoples and the public, describes the scientific, evidence-based findings of the EPR completed for the licence amendment application by the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) to decommission its Safe Low-Power Kritical Experiment (SLOWPOKE-2) non-power nuclear research reactor currently licensed under NPROL-19.00/2023.

This EPR report includes CNSC staff’s assessment of SRC’s 2018 licence application and environmental protection documents that support compliance verification activities (e.g., inspections and desktop reviews) conducted at the SRC SLOWPOKE-2 reactor by CNSC staff.

The focus of this EPR report is on items of regulatory oversight and on typical topics of public interest related to the decommissioning of a nuclear facility, such as releases to air and surface water and radiation protection.

CNSC staff’s conclusions are based on, but are not limited to, the following:

  • SRC’s detailed decommissioning plan
  • SRC’s environmental impact statement
  • SRC’s decommissioning radiation physics assessment
  • CNSC staff’s assessment of environmental protection requirements for SLOWPOKE-2 reactors

Based on the EPR conducted for this licence application, CNSC staff conclude that the SRC has made and will continue to make adequate provision for the protection of the health of persons and the environment throughout all decommissioning activities.

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