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Orano Canada Inc. Cluff Lake Uranium Mine Licence Renewal

March 2019

Executive Summary

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) conducts Environmental Protection Reviews (EPR) under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSCA) (formerly known as Environmental Assessments under the NSCA) for all projects, in accordance with its mandate, to ensure the protection of the environment and health of persons. 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 findings of the EPR under the NSCA completed for the licence application by Orano Canada Inc. (Orano), formerly Areva Resources Canada Inc., to renew the Cluff Lake Project licence UMDL-MINEMILL-CLUFF.01/2019. This EPR under the NSCA includes CNSC staff’s assessment of the licence application and the documents submitted in support of compliance verification activities (e.g., inspections) conducted at the Cluff Lake Project by CNSC staff.

The EPR report focuses on items that are of current public and regulatory interest such as releases to air and surface water and radiation protection to terrestrial and human environments.

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

  • the predictions of radionuclides and hazardous substances in the receiving environment presented in the 2003 Comprehensive Study Report for the Cluff Lake Decommissioning Project, which were accepted by the Commission
  • CNSC staff’s verification that environmental monitoring data reported by Orano’s annual compliance reports are within the predictions accepted by the Commission for the Cluff Lake Project
  • the Detailed Post-Decommissioning Plan prepared by Orano for the proposed post-closure monitoring, maintenance, and administrative activities for the Cluff Lake Project
  • Orano’s 2015 Environmental Risk Assessment for the Cluff Lake Project
  • environmental sampling data collected by the CNSC’s Independent Environmental Monitoring Program
  • regional health studies in proximity to the Cluff Lake Project

Based on the EPR under the NSCA conducted for this licence application, CNSC staff conclude that Orano has made adequate provisions for the protection of the environment and the health of persons.

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