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Posts Tagged ‘glow-in-the-dark signs’

The atomic rhubarb of Pembroke

April 3rd, 2009 Comments off

Tritium-laced plants found near town’s glow-in-the-dark sign factory
MARTIN MITTELSTAEDT Environment Reporter, The Globe and Mail
Tuesday, September 28, 1999

Radioactive rhubarb has been found growing in Pembroke, Ont., near a factory that makes glow-in-the-dark signs from nuclear waste.

The rhubarb, apparently thriving downwind of the sign factory owned by SRB Technologies (Canada) Inc., contained about 1,000 times the radioactive tritium found either in rain water in Ottawa or in a rhubarb sample taken from a garden about 45 kilometres away.

“It was unusually large rhubarb, but I don’t think it was mutant or anything like that,” said Ole Hendrickson, a resident of the Ottawa Valley community who helped collect the samples. Read more…

Boxes of tritium dropped on Bank Street in Ottawa

April 2nd, 2009 Comments off

One day just before Christmas in December 2000, after a particularly depressing relicensing hearing for SRB Technologies (the tritium light factory in Pembroke Ontario) I picked up the Ottawa Citizen and noticed a tiny little blurb about boxes of radioactive material falling off a Purolator truck in downtown Ottawa. SRB had just been granted a 5-year license despite our protests about their sloppy and highly polluting practices.

Turns out that a passerby in downtown Ottawa noticed three boxes in the middle of Bank St. with radiation symbols on them. She called the police and several blocks of downtown Ottawa were cordoned off while the boxes were dealt with by emergency services. Personnel from SRB in Pembroke were called to retrieve the material, compressed tritium gas and lights bound for an undisclosed destination in the United States. Read more…

Canadian watchdog cleared tritium shipment to Iran

March 31st, 2009 Comments off

MARTIN MITTELSTAEDT, ENVIRONMENT REPORTER, The Globe and Mail
March 23, 2006

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission approved a shipment to Iran last year by a Canadian company of about 70,000 glow-in-the-dark lights containing tritium, a radioactive gas that can also be used as a component in hydrogen bombs.

The amount of tritium approved by the nuclear regulator for shipment to the volatile Middle Eastern country was about 10 per cent of the quantity considered necessary for making one nuclear weapon, although the company selling the lights, SRB Technologies (Canada) Inc., said it sent less than it was allowed.
Read more…

Lights out for glow-in-the-dark sign factory

March 29th, 2009 Comments off

Globe and Mail

Pembroke facility shuts down operations temporarily amid
radioactivity concerns

By MARTIN MITTELSTAEDT
Thursday, December 1, 2005

A company that contaminated groundwater around its plant in Pembroke, Ont., with radioactive tritium says it has halted operations and will not resume manufacturing until it puts in place better pollution controls.

SRB Technologies (Canada) Inc. announced its temporary shutdown in an e-mail sent late Tuesday night to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, the country’s nuclear watchdog agency. The letter was sent just before the company was scheduled to appear at a CNSC hearing yesterday into the future of the plant. Read more…

High levels of radioactive tritium found in Pembroke landfill

March 28th, 2009 Comments off

MARTIN MITTELSTAEDT, ENVIRONMENT REPORTER, The Globe and Mail
Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Ministry of Environment has found elevated levels of radioactive tritium in ground water at the municipal dump serving Pembroke, Ont., and several other nearby Ottawa River valley communities.

The dump, the Alice and Fraser Township Landfill, is not licensed to receive radioactive waste, and it is not known exactly how tritium, used to make glow-in-the-dark lights, among other products, and nuclear weapons, got into the dump. Read more…