IGNACE – NEWS – The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) and the Township of Ignace are pleased to announce they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The goal of the MOU is to strengthen the working relationship between Ignace and the NWMO.
“Signing this memorandum of understanding with Ignace is an important step forward as we move towards selecting a site in 2023. Collaborating with communities is a critical component of Canada’s plan and to our success,” said Laurie Swami, President and CEO of NWMO. “There is plenty of work yet to do, but this agreement shows that we have accomplished a great deal in our engagement with Mayor Penny Lucas and the Township Council and helps us solidify next steps.”
The MOU focuses on the importance of creating a collaborative plan that would lead to the development of a potential hosting agreement should Ignace agree the project is a good fit for the community. Such an agreement would be implemented if Ignace and Wabigoon Lake Ojibway Nation express their willingness and then are selected as hosts for a deep geological repository for the safe, long-term storage of Canada’s used nuclear fuel.
Canada’s plan will only proceed in an area with informed and willing hosts, where the municipality, First Nation and Métis communities, and others in the area are working together to implement it.
“The MOU is a huge step in moving both parties towards the drafting of a potential hosting agreement should Ignace and Wabigoon Lake Ojibway Nation become the willing host communities selected to host the deep geological repository,” says Ignace Mayor Penny Lucas. “It has been quite a journey to get to this stage. And while we still have much work to do, I am looking forward to positive future engagements with President Laurie Swami and the entire NWMO team.”
“We are appreciative of the time and continued commitment Ignace has put into the site selection process over the last ten years. This is a complex project that will bring with it many community benefits and it’s exciting to see we are advancing together,” said Ms. Swami.
Both Ignace and the NWMO acknowledged the importance of reflecting on community priorities and objectives including project safety, community understanding of the project, and to advance community well-being. While the MOU celebrates the successes this relationship has had to date, it is not intended to be legally binding and imposes no obligations upon either party.