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COMMENTS OF THE
NUCLEAR FREE GREAT LAKES CAMPAIGN
BEFORE THE INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
OF THE GREAT LAKES

September 24, 1999


The Nuclear Free Great Lakes Campaign consists of eight safe-energy organizations from the United States and Canada dedicated to the cessation of radioactive contamination of the Great Lakes, and the removal of nuclear power from the Great Lakes Basin.  We appreciate the opportunity to make the following remarks to the International Joint Commission (IJC) in support of its enlightened policy calling for "zero-discharge" of persistent toxins into the Basin, which include bioactive and bioaccumulative radionuclides.

The Nuclear Free Great Lakes Campaign endorses the advisories and recommendations of the IJC in its 8th and 9th Annual Report on the treatment of radionuclides.  Recent alarming developments in both Canada and the U.S. concerning reactor operation, radioactive waste transport and temporary storage,  and intended use of experimental "mixed-oxide" — or MOx — fuels seriously threaten these worthwhile aspirations.

The Campaign wishes to express its wholehearted support for the IJC recommendations for "zero discharge" of radioactive substances into the Great Lakes, and makes the following recommendations to the Commission, and to the governments of the United States and Canada:

to safeguard and achieve the IJC's stated aims of "zero discharge" of radionuclides, the Campaign:

1.) petitions the IJC to call for an emergency re-evaluation of the primary and secondary safety systems at each and all nuclear reactors in the Great Lakes Basin; 

2.)  petitions the IJC to call on the governments and regulatory agencies of the United States and Canada to halt the further use of dry-casks for temporary storage of irradiated fuel until such time as the regulator agencies themselves from both countries:

3.)  petitions the IJC to call on the government and Nuclear Regulatory Commission of the United States to cease all plans to ship irradiated fuel assemblies in, into, or through the Great Lakes Basin until such time as a fully operational permanent, deep-geologic repository exists for the perpetual storage of the fuel assemblies.

The Campaign stands ready to support the IJC in achieving its stated goals of "zero discharge" of harmful radionuclides in the Basin, and is available to answer any questions members of the Commission may have about these recommendations and positions.

We thank you for your efforts on this issue, and are grateful for your consideration of our viewpoints.

Note:  NEIS helped develop these positions with other member organizations of the Nuclear Free Great Lakes Campaign as part of the planning that emerged from the NFGL Action Camp of August, 1999.  NEIS members delivered this position paper to the IJC at its Annual Meeting in Milwaukee, WI, in September, 1999


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