The Greater Oshawa Chamber of Commerce (GOCC) has been on record with the province of Ontario since December 2005 supporting the Nuclear New Build at the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station “B”; and it further supports the Municipality of Clarington’s position that Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) is the preferred supplier of the new nuclear. In a presentation to the hearings on April 7th, 2011 delegates from the GOCC reaffirmed its support for the application for Darlington’s New Build and that Ontario Power Generation’s programs (to ensure the safety of the public and protection of the environment) warrant this support stating “OPG shows all of the elements of managerial control necessary and a proven safety and environmental performance record.”
The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC), a long time advocate for an adequate, stable and reliable supply of electricity for Ontario’s businesses, applauded the Ontario government’s announcement in November for the refurbishment of 10 nuclear reactors and the building of two new generating facilities.
The OCC believes that renewed investment in nuclear energy is fundamental to Ontario’s economy and business competitiveness. “The decision by the Government to make this substantial investment into nuclear energy will go a long way in creating sustainable and affordable energy production within the province,” says Len Crispino, President and CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, adding “the importance of nuclear generation to provide stable base load energy cannot be overstated.”
The GOCC told the hearings that at the Ontario and Canadian Chamber of Commerce annual meetings in 2009 delegates overwhelming supported the resolution urging the Government of Ontario and Canada to make as a priority, a Nuclear Energy Strategy that will continue to provide jobs, investment and economic strength for the Ontario and Canadian economy in the coming decades.
The GOCC feels the nuclear industry is vital to both Ontario and Canada and will build a strong foundation in securing a continuous and reliable supply of energy for Ontario, as well as increasing opportunities and innovation in the energy sector.
The GOCC told the hearings that for Ontario and Canada to continue to play a leading role in the global nuclear industry, the key stakeholders in the nuclear manufacturing industry have a responsibility to work with all levels of government in Canada to create a more favorable climate for investment and that includes OPG. Both levels of government have a responsibility to make a decision without further delay.
During its presentation the GOCC highlighted three areas of OPG’s nuclear performance that are often not recognized but which directly affect, in a positive way, Durham Region businesses, the province and Canada. These three fields are:
2) Positive Impact on the Durham, Ontario and Canadian business community; and
3) Contributions to the quality of life of Durham residents and Canadians, the world environment and Canada’s standing as an environmental nation.
The GOCC further told the hearings that the relationships OPG has with Clarington and the other Durham Region communities is very strong and that OPG works hard to maintain open and transparent communications with local community residents and key stakeholders through a variety of outreach activities. “The GOCC has constant contact with OPG thru various communication vehicles and attendance at meetings,” stated Bob Malcolmson, CEO of the Greater Oshawa Chamber, adding, “when the need arises the GOCC has its own communication vehicles, both printed and email, and it publishes important information and announcements from OPG to the over 5500 businesses in Oshawa and Clarington.”
The Chamber told the committee that OPG is a strong economic driver in Durham Region through its operations, projects, and leadership in community building organizations and that Ontario has very few industries that offer the potential for ongoing long-term job and wealth creation that OPG offers. As one of the largest employers in Durham Region OPG has highly educated and skilled job opportunities available now and in the future. In 2010 OPG’s Corporate Citizenship Program provided approximately $350,000 to local community groups and initiatives in Durham Region focusing on environment, youth, culture and business initiatives.