The Canadian Environment Assessment Agency is satisfied that Ontario Power Generation has answered all of its questions about a planned nuclear waste repository in Kincardine.
The CEAA wanted more information on OPG's report of possible alternate locations from last year.
OPG says building the DGR elsewhere is feasible but would cause delays, high costs, and the environmental impact of transporting the waste from Bruce Power.
Spokesman Fred Kuntz says there are over 40 sites around the great lakes, mostly stateside, that store nuclear waste at or near the surface.
"All around the great lakes there are nuclear installations, you know, the majority of them are on the US side. And, you know, these organizations are all storing their waste safely, we like to think so. We're certainly storing our waste safely. There's only one that is saying were going to do what is best practice, and that is to go deep down into the earth, into the rock, and store the waste there permanently," he explains.
He says OPG is the only proposed facility for permanent disposal of low and medium level nuclear waste.
Kuntz says on a global basis, there are 10 deep geologic repositories for nuclear waste, and none have leaked.
Kuntz adds Canada can be a world leader to show how to safely deal with nuclear waste including its unique plan to bury Low level nuclear waste.
"Around the world, you do see low level waste stored at the surface or near the surface in some countries like France. It's radioactive for 100 to 300 years, so you don't need to go as deep. Intermediate and high level waste, the waste is radioactive for 100,000 years or more, so it is best to go deep with intermediate and high level waste,"explained Kuntz.
Some communities worry that burying the waste near the great lakes put drinking water at risk for thousands of years.
The CEAA will now write a draft report and analysis, which will be followed by a public comment period.
Kuntz explains the proposal has been through a scientific review and record long hearing by the Joint Review Panel.
However, review panel participant John Mann of Saugeen Shores says the project process should be expired, as a decision should have been made within two years of submission to the JRP.
He adds the environment minister has acknowledged his complaint that the project is time-barred. However, the minister now says they were just acknowledging receipt of Mann's letter, not his view.
John Mann again points to section 126 of the CEAA Act 2012 which says any ongoing projects continue under the new act of 2012.
He says nowhere does the act say the time line for the project would restart. He says the act instead refers to section 54, which confirms that the 24 month timeline starts when the project is referred to the joint review panel.
He says it is impossible for the CEAA to show a specific timeline adding up to the two year deadline, even accounting for pausing for further information requests.