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Politics This Morning: Bloc chief to meet with opponents of nuclear waste site

By Marco Vigliotti      
Bloc Québécois leader Martine Ouellette is expected to spend the day a few hours west of Ottawa, meeting with local residents concerned about a proposed nuclear waste site and touring the Chalk River nuclear facility. Photo courtesy of the Bloc Québécois
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Good Thursday morning,

We hope you’re enjoying the glowing early August sunshine gracing the nation’s capital but be on the lookout for potential thunderstorms in the afternoon.

It looks to be a quiet day for most federal party leaders, with no public functions announced for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau or his Conservative and NDP counterparts, Andrew Scheer and Thomas Mulcair, respectively.

Mr. Trudeau and his rivals, though, are surely keeping a close eye on the escalating war of words between the Trump administration and North Korea. On Wednesday, Pyongyang released Canadian pastor Hyeon Soo Lim after two and half years of detention in the secretive, autocratic state.

But for the most part, Parliamentarians are making the rounds on local barbecue circuits, looking to squeeze-in more face-time with constituents before being recalled for summer caucus meetings in early September.

However, Bloc Québécois leader Martine Ouellet will spend Thursday morning a few hours west of the Hill in Fort William, Que. as part of her ongoing tour of the Outaouais region.

The Bloc chief is expected to sit down with members of the Old Fort William Cottagers’ Association at 10:30 a.m., likely to discuss their joint opposition to a planned nuclear waste storage site in Chalk River, Ont.

The “near surface” depository, conceived and planned by Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, is expected to store nuclear refuse near the Chalk River reactor site, located along the Ottawa River, which straddles the Ontario-Quebec border.

The proposal has attracted strong opposition from several local groups on both sides of the river over concerns about safety and cost.

In the National Capital Region on Wednesday, Ms. Ouellet slammed the proposed nuclear storage site as “senseless,” according to reporting by La Devoir.

The Bloc chief is expected to make a rare foray into Ontario to visit the Chalk River facility later in the afternoon.

Senator meets with former prisoners in Kingston

Further south in Kingston, Independent Senator Kim Pate will visit the city’s former prison for women to pay tribute to those who served time at the facility, built on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee.

Sen. Pate is expected to meet with women who were previously imprisoned there and participate in a healing circle honouring those who passed on.  After the visit, she will attend screening of the film Eyes in the Back of Your Head, and subsequent panel discussion at a small theatre in Kingston.

Finally, birthday wishes are in store for Liberal MP David Lametti, Conservative MP Jamie Schmale, and Conservative Senators Rose-May Poirier and Bob Runciman. Mr. Runciman is leaving the Senate today as he has reached the mandatory retirement age of 75.

Have a great day.

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