Saskatchewan Expanding Involvement in Nuclear Fuel Cycle

An article in the World Nuclear News website is entitled Saskatchewan includes SMRs in growth planIt discusses Saskatchewan generating 80% of its electricity through renewable and nuclear means.  This means Saskatchewan can reduce the amount of carbon emissions because of electricity generation being reduced by as much as 80%.  The nuclear power is being planned to be generated with Small Nuclear Reactors (SMRs).

Also noted in this article is the potential to recover both lithium and rare earth elements in Saskatchewan.  These are components for the manufacturing of batteries that can store a large amount of power.   These batteries can be used for electric vehicles or power storage.

So if Saskatchewan uses SMRs for power generation, it will be involved with another part of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle.  It is already involved with mining-mineral processing of yellowcake (U3O8) in the Athabasca Basin .  It produces about 22% of the world’s uranium.  Saskatchewan had the opportunity to be involved with the  refining of U3O to uranium trioxide (UO3).  Unfortunately, it was decided not to do this in Saskatchewan but it is done instead  in Blind River, Ontario.  After it is refined to UO3, it is transported to Port Hope, Ontario to be made into nuclear fuel.

The article Saskatchewan includes SMRs in growth plan discusses Saskatchewan becoming involved with power generation.  It will reduce the amount of carbon generated.   

The nuclear waste from these SMRs can be disposed of safely underground in Saskatchewan (if it is not kept for later re-use).  This will mean Saskatchewan becoming engaged in a third part of the nuclear fuel cycle.  A promising future in Saskatchewan.