A commitment to global safety and security

In April 2010, the governments of Canada and the United States committed to work cooperatively to repatriate spent highly-enriched uranium (HEU) fuel currently stored at Chalk River Laboratories to the United States as part of the Global Threat Reduction Initiative, a broad international effort to consolidate HEU inventories in fewer locations around the world. This initiative promotes non-proliferation by removing existing weapons grade material from Canada and transferring it to the U.S., which has the capability to reprocess it for peaceful purposes. In March 2012, Prime Minister Harper announced that Canada and the U.S. were expanding their efforts to return additional inventories of HEU materials, including those in liquid form.

Of the 53 countries engaged in this initiative, many have already completed repatriation activities. In all cases activities have been carried out safely. The repatriation of these HEU-bearing materials to the U.S. allows Canada to both contribute to global nuclear security and to provide for a timely and permanent disposition of these materials for future generations of Canadians. The U.S. has the technology in place to receive these materials and to achieve their permanent disposition.

It is also our technical opinion that repatriation provides the safest, most secure, and fastest solution for the permanent disposition of these materials, thereby eliminating a liability for future generations of Canadians.

CNL, which will be responsible for repatriating HEU materials, is committed to ensuring that concerns about safety and security of this project are heard, and that timely information will be shared as the project progresses.

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A Worldwide Initiative

Since 1996, The Global Threat Reduction Initiative has removed 3,500 kilograms of HEU and plutonium. Stockpiles of HEU have been removed from 22 countries: Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, Greece, Latvia, Libya, Mexico, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, and Ukraine.

Countries that have safely and securely transported all HEU material back to country of origin (USA or Russia)