Investigating potential deep borehole disposal solutions in Northeastern Alberta and Southwestern Saskatchewan for used fuel from SMRs

Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) supports on-grid power, industry heat and power, off-grid solutions, district heating, and remote desalination. Canada's SMR market, valued at $5.3B (2025-2040), is highly promising. However, concerns from public, Indigenous, and potential users persist on safety, waste, and costs. Ongoing engagement and research initiatives supported by FES are crucial. With no approved disposal site, nuclear waste in Canada faces uncertainties post-impact assessments. DBD emerges as an alternative for SMR waste management.

This research, organized into three working packages (WPs), investigates potential DBD solutions in Northeastern Alberta and Southwestern Saskatchewan. WP1 focuses on global deep borehole disposal, emphasizing environmental factors. WP2 evaluates boundary conditions in Western Canada. WP3 explores atomic geothermal energy in DBD for responsible waste disposal. Deliverables 1-4 consolidate findings, establishing the foundation for secure nuclear waste management in Western Canada.