Atomic Energy of Canada Limited


AECL CNL joint statement on COVID-19

CNL and AECL work together to confront COVID-19

Over the past few weeks, the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the operations and activities of business, governments and citizens around the world. That is no different for Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) and Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL). During this period of unprecedented change and international activity, both organizations have been confronted with difficult and extraordinary decisions that would have seemed hypothetical only a few weeks ago.

As the leaders of AECL and CNL, we want to start by thanking our respective employees for the tremendous flexibility, responsiveness, dedication and hard work that we have seen over the last few weeks. We are proud of the extent to which our respective employees have stepped up to confront the challenges of these times, to go above and beyond, to respond to the new demands at work, and to look out for their families, friends and neighbours at home.

We recognize the extent of the challenge and the inherent uncertainty of the situation. This makes the work that has taken place over the last many days, even more significant. We also want to assure our respective employees that AECL and CNL are working closely to collaboratively confront this pandemic and the many challenges that it presents to the safe and continued operations of both organizations. We have shared interests, goals and activities during routine times, and this unprecedented international event requires us to pull even tighter together to understand and address the uncertainty that it brings to our work.

In doing so, we recognize that our sites are home to some of Canada’s most unique and innovative facilities, laboratories, equipment and expertise. In times like these, everyone has a part to play. Collectively, we are working closely to understand how our respective organization’s unique capabilities and people can be used to help Canada respond to this pandemic. We know that you are all up to the challenge. This process is just getting underway, but you can expect to hear more about these efforts in the days and weeks ahead.

In the meantime, let’s continue to help one another through COVID-19. We are doing our very best to protect staff through this event by following the direction of public health officials, so we ask that you do the same. As this is a rapidly evolving situation, we invite you to continue to follow our ongoing employee updates, to make sure we act as a team in our response to COVID-19.

We recognize that the need to be creative, flexible, and responsive will remain for some time. We look forward to continuing to work together and with all of you, as we face these challenges together.

Stay safe everyone and keep up the great work.

Richard Sexton
President and CEO, AECL

Mark Lesinski                                                             Joe McBrearty
President and CEO, CNL                                            Chief Operating Officer, CNL

AECL’s statement on COVID-19

In light of the changing circumstances surrounding COVID-19 and in line with other international and Canadian institutions and organizations, AECL is remaining abreast of the current situation and taking precautions to ensure the health and safety of its employees; partners; collaborators; visitors and of the public.

Through its Health and Safety Committee, AECL continues to update its plan and protocol for COVID-19, based on the most up-to-date information available from the World Health Organization, the Government of Canada and provincial public health authorities. At this time, AECL has implemented a number of measures to help reduce the risk of infection and slow the spread of the virus, including eliminating non-essential travel, and encouraging employees to work from home.

While at this time the risk to AECL employees may be low, we are cognizant that the situation continues to evolve. AECL will continue to take steps to mitigate risk and prepare for various scenarios, as informed by federal and provincial authorities.

AECL is also overseeing the actions on the part of Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) to prepare for the ongoing safe operations of AECL sites. For more information, please visit CNL’s website.

Press release

The United States Department of Energy (DOE), Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), and Nuclear Decommissioning Authority of the United Kingdom (NDA) Sign Agreement To Exchange Information Concerning Environmental Remediation and Management of Radioactive Waste

March 8th, 2020—The leaders of the United States Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Environmental Management, Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL) and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority of the United Kingdom (NDA) cleanup programs signed an agreement today to supplement their longstanding collaboration arrangements and encourage trilateral collaboration to take place between the three organizations. William ‘Ike’ White, Senior Advisor for the Office of Environmental Management to the Under Secretary for Science for the Department of Energy; Alastair MacDonald, Vice-President, Decommissioning and Waste Management, on behalf of Richard Sexton, President and Chief Executive Officer for AECL; and Adrian Simper, Group Director for Strategy and Technology for NDA, signed the agreement during a ceremony held at the Waste Management Symposia 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona.

The Trilateral Agreement formalizes recent collaborative activities between the three organizations in areas including aging infrastructure management, in situ decommissioning/ disposal and near surface disposal facilities — all of which are important considerations across the three countries in working towards safe and effective cleanup of legacy sites. The agreement has a formal governance structure to ensure that activities are targeted on areas that promise the most benefit in terms of safe, efficient and timely environmental remediation, and that the proposed efforts have support from the highest levels.

“Collaborating with our counterparts and sharing best practices wherever possible will help to ensure that we all learn from one another,” said William “Ike” White.   “The ability to conduct joint technology projects, exchange personnel and conduct inter-country program reviews will increase the capabilities of our people, and allow all of us to leverage our collective resources as we tackle some of the most difficult environmental challenges.

“We are all working hard, but face challenges cleaning up our sites and effectively managing our waste, to better protect the environment and the health and safety of our communities, all the while ensuring good value,” said Richard Sexton. “Today’s announcement clearly signals that through sharing knowledge and best practices, we can build on experience gained by our counterparts and tap into the right expertise, to find unique and safe solutions to common issues, thereby leaving a better legacy for future generations.”

Adrian Simper added “We have been collaborating on a bilateral basis for some years now with our North American friends. This has allowed us each to benefit from sharing each other’s experiences of our most difficult clean-up tasks. Coming together under this agreement is a natural progression and provides a unique opportunity to accelerate our individual missions and better manage our environmental responsibilities,”