Canada, U.K. to enter nuclear power cooperation agreement

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Canadian Minister of Natural Resources Greg Rickford announced Monday that a memorandum of understanding has been signed with the U.K. to facilitate nuclear energy cooperation.

Through this agreement, the two countries will strengthen their commitments to work in areas including plutonium disposal feasibility studies and development of nuclear generation based on other sources of nuclear fuel. This agreement follows updates on commitments made between Canada and the U.K. in 2014.

"We are creating opportunities for job creation and economic growth in Canada's nuclear sector by opening new avenues for collaboration with the United Kingdom," Rickford said. "The new cooperation announced today enhances our relationships and gives Canada's nuclear industry improved access to growing opportunities in the U.K.'s nuclear energy market."

In the United Kingdom, the Nuclear Industrial Strategy states that at minimum 12 nuclear energy plants should be constructed and be operational by 2030. The total output they are aiming for is approximately 16 gigawatts of electricity. With these new facilities, older reactors can be retired and the system as a whole can be made more efficient.

Within the memorandum there are benefits to stakeholders in each country's nuclear power industry — this includes small- to medium-sized businesses specializing in this area. In Canada, nuclear power accommodates approximately 15 percent of electricity across the country.

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