Reader responds to Gideon Forman’s rhetoric

Gideon Forman has no medical background.

Stratford Beacon Herald

This is a response to the letter from Gideon Forman, Executive Director of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, who claims that we need to phase out coal and nuclear power to protect human health.

As energy supply is the very cornerstone of our economy, employment and standard of living, it is essential that decisions made about our power generation and distribution system be based upon fact and technical viability.

Forman, who holds a Masters Degree in philosophy from McGill University, states that nuclear energy is not healthy and that a German study found that children living near nuclear facilities had an elevated risk of leukemia.

Yet Michael Binder, President of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, has already responded publicly to this claim by Forman in stating, “Studies have shown over and over that people living near nuclear power plants are as healthy as the rest of the population.”

“When Forman mentions the 2008 German study, he fails to tell you that both its authors and the German Radiological Protection Commission specifically ruled out radiation as a reason for the presence of some clusters of childhood leukemia near the nuclear plants.”

Dr. Ross McKitrick, of the University of Guelph, recently released a study in which he looked at the health risks from the two coal-fired plants in Ontario.

He found that the emissions from these plants are small compared to the emissions of the coal plants of the northeastern United States and that the Ontario government had received information years ago which indicated that closing our two coal plants would do little to change air quality in Ontario.

If natural gas generating stations are built to replace coal, then the change in air quality would be less due to the emissions from gas generation. Dr. Forman does not mention that natural gas generating stations are being built to supply back-up generation for renewables, and it is important to consider all facets of the issue.

An interesting article by Caithness Windfarm researchers in Scotland reveals that up to April 1. 2008, 482 wind energy accidents had been reported, with 49 fatalities. If you compare these figures to the safety record of nuclear energy in Canada, it is obvious that alarmist claims about nuclear energy are not supported by the facts.

Forman quotes Dr. Arlene King, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, when she stated, “the scientific evidence available to date does not demonstrate a direct causal link between wind turbine noise and adverse health effects.”

The operative words in this statement are “to date”, as there has never been a proper epidemiological study performed.

Ontario citizens must take the time to look past rhetoric and seek out factual information on sources of power generation.

Nuclear energy has provided our province with safe, affordable and reliable electricity for decades and it will continue to be a valued part of Ontario’s energy supply plan.


7 thoughts on “Reader responds to Gideon Forman’s rhetoric

  1. For all those misinformed about nuclear energy or more likely not informed at all; I have this to say:


    Don’t know what they are, never heard of them?

    LOOK IT UP! You’ll absolutely learn something!

    Here’s the carrot: Inexhaustible pollution free energy for all humanity FOREVER!

    There is no stick!

    Industrial green energy is a contradiction in terms. There is not, nor can there ever be anything “green” from ANY industrial pursuit or construct on an industrial level.

    The environmental footprint of one energy technology VS another is solely related to energy density and emissions. Like wind and solar, nuclear reactors produce no emissions and spent nuclear fuel exists only to be reprocessed and reused over and over again to fuel our future. That is the “integral” part of the reactor technology eluded to above.

    That just leaves energy density. Compared to energy from atoms, green energy is a really, really bad joke!

    The truth is out there!


  2. It’s funny how the nuclear industry is pointing to their studies to prove that Nuclear energy is safe, just like the Canwea is proving wind energy is safe with their selected studies.
    Personally, I would rather have a natural gas plant in my neighbourhood then a nuclear plant. If things can go wrong they will , and someday it will happen to a nuke plant unfortunately. The problem is that they are operated by humans and humans always cut corners or make mistakes.
    If a natural gas plant explodes, the damage will be localized vs a radiation leak….

  3. “There is not, nor can there ever be anything “green” from ANY industrial pursuit or construct on an industrial level.”

    So true! Unfortunately the model of growth by huge energy corporations and government shutter at the thought of a home owner being in control of their own green energy source.

    Imagine, every home in Ontario using the 40 billion in subsidies to install a small wind/solar/solar hot water units on top of residential/commercial roofs. We would have our own booming, Provincial economy. Thousands of good paying, skilled jobs to install and maintain the units. No towering monsters that will be abandoned in a decade. No new hydro lines/roads needing to be built.

    The homeowner, environment and economy win.


  4. Interesting points in Ms. Di Cocco’s article. I agree that large scale electrical generation should be centralized and streamlined.
    I don’t like the recklessness planning in using large scale Industrial Wind Turbines.. Part of the issue is the care that is taken with the hydro lines that are already present in rural areas: old, out dated lines with loads of stray voltage.
    With so many different Wind companies coming into communities and bearing very little responsibility or liability, their presence is definitely worrisome. This government backs Wind companies only, not residents.

  5. Information is wonderful

    After Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, a website was set up [ I don’t know if it still exists] which listed ~ 250 different Nuclear Plant “accidents” around the globe.

    Sorry I’m not up to providing the link, I’m running away from my house which is surrounded by 18 IWT’s within a 3 km radius and I don’t get any restorative sleep there.

  6. Jeepers creepers!

    You anti-nuke people could AT LEAST MAKE AN EFFORT TO READ!!

    Your safety arguments are as out of date as megalithic neutron moderated reactors! But I’m guessing you likely don’t know what I’m talking about! – AGAIN!

    THERE IS NO SCIENTIFICALLY VALID REASON for a nuclear reactor to be either unsafe or produce spent nuclear fuel! Enrico Fermi figured this out way back in 1946 (Clementine reactor). GOOGLE IT!!!!!

    ALL of the “problems” that civilian nuclear energy has are MANUFACTURED as a direct result of IGNORANCE, GREED and POLITICS. Just like the green energy debacle!

    On April 3rd, 1986 this was proven beyond all reasonable doubt at the EBR II as part of the Integral Fast Reactor Program TWICE in the same day. YOU CAN GOOGLE THAT TO!

    Or go here. ://

    On April 26, a less well informed madman tried it at Chernobyl!

    This is what is possible with nuclear energy today:

    Or we can continue to unnecessarily rape and pollute this planet so the greedy can get richer while the ignorant cause us all to GET SCREWED!

    Thank you ANTI-NUKE CROWD!


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