The Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) is committing C$970 million ($708 million) in debt financing toward the small modular reactor (SMR) being developed by Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

The CIB-financed phase 1 work covers all preparation prior to nuclear construction, including project design, site preparation, procurement of long lead-time equipment, utility connections, digital strategy and other project management costs. This is the bank’s largest investment in clean power to date.

OPG is constructing the 300 MW reactor, which would be Canada’s first SMR, next to Darlington Nuclear Generating Station in Clarington, Ohio.

In December 2021, OPG selected GE Hitachi (GEH) to supply its BWRX-300 small modular reactor (SMR) for the Darlington site. GEH is working to deploy the BWRX-300 there as early as 2028.

The BWRX-300 is a water-cooled, natural circulation reactor with passive safety systems based off the design and licensing of GE-Hitachi’s NRC-certified ESBWR. As the tenth evolution of the boiling water reactor (BWR), the company says the BWRX-300 represents the simplest, yet most innovative BWR design since GE began developing nuclear reactors in 1955.

The Darlington SMR will be one of the first to be developed in Canada and is expected to spearhead similar projects in Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and Alberta.

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