“Bad guys and bombs: The nuclear risks of small modular reactors
“Nuclear proliferation experts are warning that 50 years of policy designed to limit the spread of nuclear weapons is unravelling as governments invest in certain small modular reactors that could be misused to build bombs.
“The concerns are aimed at Moltex, a Saint John, N.B., nuclear startup building small modular reactors (SMRs) that will be powered with spent fuel from CANDU reactors. To make the fuel, Moltex plans to separate plutonium from uranium in CANDU waste and use the extracted plutonium to power new SMRs.
“It is this separation process that led a dozen nuclear scientists to write to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in September, warning him that Moltex is a nuclear weapon proliferation riskand calling for a formal risk assessment of emerging nuclear technologies.
“Edward Lyman, Union of Concerned Scientists nuclear power safety director, was one of the signatories of the letter. Lyman — who has testified multiple times before the U.S. Congress and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on the topics of nuclear power safety, security and proliferation — said that by separating and concentrating plutonium, Moltex is completing one of the most difficult steps on the path to making a bomb…”
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