New Brunswick signs letter of intent to build Canada's first light-water reactor

July 14, 2010

The Province of New Brunswick, New Brunswick Power and the France-based multinational, AREVA, have signed a Letter of Intent to develop a “clean energy park” that would feature one of AREVA’s mid-size reactors: the 1,100 megawatt ATMEA1 plant, or the 1,250 megawatt KERENA plant.  As well, the “clean energy park” would include renewable energy generation facilities, such as biomass and solar.

If constructed, the ATMEA1 or KERENA plant would be Canada’s first light-water nuclear reactor.  At present, all of Canada’s utility generating nuclear plants use the heavy water CANDU technology developed and marketed by Atomic Energy of Canada Limited.

This project would be North America’s third “clean energy park” built by AREVA.  New Brunswick Power intends to use the power generated domestically, and to export the power to the Maritime region and New England.

The announcement has been met with some controversy, particularly as it may have an effect on AECL's ongoing sale process.  

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