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October 28, 2021

CNL President & CEO talks clean energy at Canada UK Energy & Climate Summit

Photo caption: Joe McBrearty President & CEO CNL (right,) joins international panel to discuss the role of nuclear innovation at the Clean Energy at Canada UK Energy & Climate Summit

Joe McBrearty touts benefits of small modular reactors, fusion and hydrogen technologies during annual gathering of leaders from Canadian, U.K. and global energy sectors 

Chalk River, ON – October 28, 2021 – Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL), Canada’s premier nuclear science and technology organization, is pleased to announce that its President and CEO, Joe McBrearty, discussed the benefits of next-generation nuclear, fusion and hydrogen technologies today during a panel on ‘New Nuclear Innovation’ at the 2021 Canada UK Energy & Climate Summit in London, UK. Organized by the Energy Roundtable, the half day summit took place during the lead-up to COP26 in Glasgow, with a focus on accelerating the adoption of clean energy technologies in Canada and the UK.

Mr. McBrearty was joined on the panel by Xanthe Kueppers, Head of Investor Relations at EDF Nuclear Generation, and Christopher Mowry, CEO of General Fusion, to discuss new technological and financing developments in nuclear and other sectors. In addition to the panels, the summit welcomed a number of dignitaries and notable guests that included The Honourable Ralph Goodale, High Commissioner for Canada in the UK, Mark Carney, COP26 Finance Advisor and UN Special Envoy on Climate Action and Finance, and Tim Gould, Chief Energy Economist of the International Energy Agency.

“Climate change is, without a doubt, the defining issue of our time, and we must leverage every possible technology at our disposal in order to reduce global emissions and transition to a more sustainable economy,” commented Mr. McBrearty. “It can be done, but it will require the necessary business conditions, including coordination and financing from both the public and private sector, an environment that fosters clean energy investment, and extensive technical research to validate next-generation technologies. Both Canada and the UK are moving in this direction, and this event gives me hope that our nations can rise to meet this challenge.”

Mr. McBrearty’s participation in the summit is part of a broader tour of the UK that includes visits and meetings with a number of organizations, including the UK’s National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), a nuclear services technology provider owned and operated by the Government of the United Kingdom, as well as the UK Atomic Energy Authority. CNL has a strong history of collaboration with the UK that it continues to cultivate, and recently developed an Action Plan with NNL that is designed to foster collaboration in research areas that include clean energy, medical isotopes, waste management and decommissioning.

For decades, CNL (and previously Atomic Energy of Canada Limited) has played a leadership role in the development of clean energy technologies in Canada, and is now leveraging this expertise to advance next-generation solutions, with research projects underway related to small modular reactors (SMRs) and advanced reactors, hydrogen, fusion and nuclear fuels. Most prominent among them is CNL’s program to demonstrate the commercial viability of SMRs, with plans to site a demonstration unit on one of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited’s sites. There are currently four proponents engaged in various stages of the siting evaluation process.

In addition to its SMR program, CNL continues to advanced research that is critical to the successful adoption of hydrogen in Canada; it is developing next-generation nuclear fuels, and recently fabricated a Tristructural-Isotropic (TRISO) based fuel, which is the first time that this has been accomplished in Canada; it is establishing a Clean Energy Demonstration, Innovation and Research park at the Chalk River campus, where it can advance hybrid energy systems that includes renewable energy technologies; and, it has launched the third intake of its Canadian Nuclear Research Initiative, a program to accelerate the deployment of SMRs and advanced reactors. CNL is also working in partnership with General Fusion, which were also in attendance at the summit, to develop tritium extraction techniques for use in commercial fusion power plants.

For more information on CNL, including its work in clean energy, please visit To learn more about the Energy Roundtable, please visit

About CNL

Canadian Nuclear Laboratories is a world leader in nuclear science and technology offering unique capabilities and solutions across a wide range of industries. Actively involved with industry-driven research and development in nuclear, transportation, clean technology, energy, defence, security and life sciences, we provide solutions to keep these sectors competitive internationally.

With ongoing investments in new facilities and a focused mandate, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories is well positioned for the future. A new performance standard reinforced with a strong safety culture underscores every activity.

For more information on the complete range of Canadian Nuclear Laboratories services, please visit or contact [email protected].


CNL Contact:

Patrick Quinn
Director, Corporate Communications

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