Truth challenged Minister

Victoria, B.C., Wednesday, January 16, 2008, by : Eugene Parks

Federal Natural Resource Minister Gary Lunn (above) endangered the lives of medical patients through his incompetent handling of the Chalk River Nuclear Facility.

Canada's nuclear safety president Linda Keen (right) ordered the nuclear facility shutdown for emergency safety repairs; Likewise, Canada's Auditor General Sheila Fraser reported serious operational issues with the facility. The facility was, and still is, unsafe and in disrepair. In response, Minister Lunn took no action to fix the nuclear reactor or find alternative supplies of nuclear medical isotopes until the safety commissioner forced him to. In response, Mr. Lunn blamed the nuclear safety commissioner for the problem and fired her saying she was, "needlessly putting the health of Canadians in jeopardy."

Whereas in fact, Mr. Lunn failed to act by not notifying the world's medical suppliers that the Chalk River Nuclear Facility needs to be shutdown for emergency repairs.

When experts tell us a bridge is failing, the responsible approach is to divert traffic away and stop using the bridge until it is fixed. Likewise, the nuclear facility's medical isotope production should have been diverted to other facilities around the world and emergency fixes begun. Minister Lunn took no such actions but rather tried to ignore the crises, which served only to exacerbate it.

Now Mr. Lunn continues to throw words of blame at the problem. He blames the nuclear safety commission for his own incompetence. He blames the Liberals for the problem. He is using words of blame and shame to address the issues. But the only blame and shame the facts support is that Minister Lunn is both incompetent and vicious, firing experts and creating a medical crisis.


Eugene Parks

Physics Graduate, University of Waterloo
Descendant of the Ottawa Valley People

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