After all the cash burned on nukes, the feds are this week considering throwing a cool $1 billion at a fusion project that won't produce any usable energy. Our nuclear muckups are like a bad Simpsons episode.
Cost to build Pickering A in 1971: $662 million ($3.2 billion in current dollars)
Life expectancy of average reactor: 40 years
Number of Pickering reactors currently out of commission: 4
Year they were shut down for long-term repairs: 1996
Estimated cost of restarting reactors: $1.3 billion
Amount restart project is over budget so far: $1.2 billion
Mishaps : Leak of toxic tritium-contaminated water for weeks due to break in weld exposed three workers to highest radiation levels in Canadian history; another leak caused worst-ever tritium spill to Lake Ontario; all four Pickering B reactors were shut down because of water leak; automatic shutdown was triggered when workers pulled the wrong fuse.
Cost to build Bruce A in 1970: $1.8 billion
Number of Bruce A reactors currently out of commission: 4
Estimated cost of restarting Bruce A: $340 million
Amount restart project is over budget so far: $60 million
Mishaps : Defect in backup shutdown system went undetected for three weeks after equipment was installed incorrectly; maintenance device inserted in reactor core burned hole through pressure tubing containing uranium fuel, shutting down reactor for over a month.
Cost to build Darlington in 1989: $14.4 billion
Mishaps : Workers did maintenance on wrong reactor; damaged fuel bundle prompted 65 per cent cut in operations for several months; valve failure caused 10,000 litres of water to spill into reactor vault; reactor shut down to fix slow leak of radioactive water.
OTHER FAILED REACTOR EXPERIMENTS
Boiling Water Reactor Cost to taxpayers: $126 million
CANDU 3 Cost to taxpayers: $75 million
Slowpoke Energy System Cost to taxpayers: $45 million
MAPLE-X10 Reactor Cost to taxpayers: $100 million
Total cost of all government subsidies to nuke industry: $17.5 billion
Cost of truck-mounted power units the province will be using to pick up energy slack in the event of a shortage this summer: $100 million each
Cost of nuclear power over a reactor's lifetime: 5 to 9 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh)
Cost of natural-gas-fired power: 2 to 4 cents per kWh