Thunder Bay

Borehole drilling near Ignace underway: Nuclear Waste Management Organization

Drilling of a new borehole near Ignace is underway as the Nuclear Waste Management Organization continues to evaluate possible locations for a depository for spent nuclear fuel.

Process will help evaluate possible site for nuclear waste depository

Fuel bundles, such as the one pictured here, would be used at the nuclear waste repository that could be located near Ignace, Ont. The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) is currently conducting drilling at a potential location for the repository. (Supplied by Nuclear Waste Management Organization)

Drilling of a new borehole near Ignace is underway as the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) continues to evaluate possible locations for a depository for spent nuclear fuel.

Drilling began on Tuesday, the NWMO said. The new borehole is located about 35 kilometres west of Ignace, and will allow for the retrieval, and analysis, of core samples.

"Borehole drilling and testing is a key part of our site investigation work," said Bradley Hammond, the NWMO's senior manager of strategic communication.

"It allows us, the Nuclear Waste Management Organization, in particular our contractors and technical specialists, to evaluate geology at a potential repository site."

Five sites being considered

This is the second borehole drilled near Ignace, and preparation is underway for one more.

"We're really pleased about this as a next step, because this is a community-driven process," Hammond said. "It's one where the NWMO has involved leaders in the area, including folks at Ignace, as well as neighbouring First Nations and Metis communities, to ensure we are bringing a lot of different perspectives to the process."

The Ignace area is one of five sites still being considered by the NWMO as the location for a nuclear waste depository.

The other sites being studied include the Hornepayne and Manitouwadge areas, as well as South Bruce, and Huron-Kinloss.