Saturday, March 19, 2011

More research into nuclear power is not the answer: Larissa Shasko

Leader-Post staff
March 18, 2011

Larissa Shasko

REGINA — The crisis unfolding at a nuclear power plant in Japan should be a wake-up call to Saskatchewan to step away from nuclear research and focus financial resources on renewable energy, the provincial Green Party said at a news conference Friday.

"Saskatchewan can lead the way in becoming world leaders in renewable energy," party leader Larissa Shasko said.

Shasko was "disappointed" in recent statements made by SaskPower Minister Rob Norris, who said that the nuclear events in Japan are further evidence of why Saskatchewan should contribute more to nuclear science, and continue research in areas such as materials science, medicine and small reactor technology.

"More science in nuclear is not the answer. More science in renewable energy is," said Shasko.

But Shasko said she distinguishes some of the work being done in the nuclear medicine field from the province's interest in helping to develop small reactor technology.

"The two are very separate," said Shasko, who added a further concern of the Green Party about small reactors is that they could potentially be used in the oilsands industry.

Shasko is also calling for legislation banning the transportation and storage of nuclear waste in the province.

Shasko said the nuclear issue should be forefront in the 2011 election, especially when the Saskatchewan Party launched a study of uranium and the nuclear cycle during its first term in government after little mention of the subject during the 2007 campaign.

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