PLNGS prides itself on its emission-free operation. As good stewards of the environment, the Station has an extensive monitoring programs and ensure compliance with permits and regulation.
The station has a comprehensive Environmental Management System, certified to the ISO International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001 Standard. The Environmental Management System(EMS) is linked with other station processes to ensure all requirements are met.
The intent of the station’s EMS is to manage its environmental responsibilities in a systematic manner. This contributes to the enhancement of environmental performance, fulfilment of environmental regulatory commitments and achievement of environmental objectives. The EMS applies to all activities and operations that physically occur at the PLNGS station and PLNGS authorized sites.
Point Lepreau Radiation Environmental Monitoring Program
As part of its overall Management System, the Pointe Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station has an Environmental Management System in place that is registered to International Organization for Standardization - ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems which we successfully recertified in 2019.
This is a testament to our strength in our environmental protection programs. This program includes a radiation Environmental Monitoring Program (REMP).
What is an environmental management system?
An Environmental Management System (EMS) ensures that all activities and products that could impact the environment have been identified and are tracked and monitored.
It provides a transparent way for NB Power to manage and minimize any impact from our operations at the Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station.
It also allows the federal nuclear regulator, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and the public to review our environmental performance.
Through our managed system, we track aspects of the environment considered by international standards to be important for the health of people and the environment, including plants, animals, the land and our water systems. We call these Significant Environmental Aspects (SEAs).
Management of these aspects forms the foundation for the management system. These aspects include radiological and non-radiological releases to water and air, waste management and accident management. Environmental assessment and improvement programs have been developed for each aspect to ensure continual improvement. All activities that support the Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station are controlled by the management system.
Why have a Radiation Environmental Monitoring Program?
The Radiation Environmental Monitoring Program (REMP) for the Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station is the program that manages the environmental aspects that have a radiological component.
REMP achieves several objectives that ensure the safety of our workers, the environment and the public.
The program allows NB Power to determine any radiation that could be received by persons located in proximity to the Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station through analyses of samples from the environment and effluents from the station. These environmental samples are taken by trained and qualified station staff working with community members who assist with the collection.
Technicians track and analyze the samples and compare them to regulatory limits, standards and best practice guidelines. They confirm compliance of the station and our waste management facilities with the release guidelines and regulations and publish the detailed results in the Point Lepreau Annual Environmental Reports on the NB Power website.
We establish and maintain the capability for environmental monitoring so that an effective response can be made to emergency conditions. This response is assured by maintaining the resources to step up the monitoring program during increased releases that are only possible in the unlikely event of an accident. The ability to interpret the data and make recommendations is also maintained.
By maintaining a database of results year over year, we are able to detect trends. The database is maintained by storing all results on a computer system that has the capability of reporting and graphing subsets of the data to provide specific reports, as needed.
The system also allows us to verify or refine environmental models. These are used to calculate release limits and to help us continually identify and verify all potential ways exposure could occur so we can further monitor and manage.
The capability of the radiation monitoring laboratory is assessed through a Quality Assurance program and through daily analytical checks. These checks demonstrate the accuracy and consistency of analyses.