Southwestern Ontario Isotope Coalition


The Southwestern Ontario Isotope Coalition launched yesterday with the goal of bringing together the region’s many strengths in supporting Canada’s national imperative and vision to increase the production, development, and use of medical isotopes in the global fight against cancer.

As a public-private partnership, the Coalition was formed by the City of Owen Sound, Bruce Power, and the Nuclear Innovation Institute (NII).

The Coalition’s first task is to develop a strategic plan that will:

  • Shape a common approach to marketing southwestern Ontario as a major centre of global isotope production;
  • Raise awareness among local communities of the vital role the region plays in isotope production;
  • Work with the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council (CNIC) to convey the message of the region’s place in the isotope ecosystem to the national and provincial governments, policymakers, health leaders; and
  • Assist in attracting public and private investment to expand the region’s role.

In March, the CNIC launched Isotopes for Hope: Canadian Leadership Needed Now More Than Ever, focusing on strengthening Canada’s global role in the isotope supply chain to double production by 2030 while expanding the critical development of isotopes. This ambitious vision presents a unique opportunity: to inspire communities of all sizes across the country, private and public sector organizations, and all levels of government to continue in their own way to this once-in-a-generation opportunity for Canada.

“We have a unique opportunity to support the important role Canada has to play internationally in fighting cancer with lifesaving medical isotopes made right here in our region,” said Ian Boddy, Mayor of Owen Sound and Co-Chair of the Coalition. “This Coalition will allow us to work with local communities, public and private sector organizations, and governments across Canada to highlight and develop our role in this national imperative.”

“It’s going to take partnerships across Canada working together to deliver on the ambitious vision outlined in the CNIC’s recent Isotopes for Hope report, and this is an important step forward to ensure Southwestern Ontario can make an important and growing contribution as a region,” said James Scongack, Executive Vice President, Operational Services & Chief Development Officer at Bruce Power. James Scongack is also Chair of the CNIC and a lifelong resident of Bruce County—and will serve as a Co-Chair for the new Coalition.

“Producing new, life-saving medical isotopes is a big part of what makes the nuclear industry so innovative,” said Bruce Wallace, President and CEO of NII and Co-Chair of the Coalition. “We look forward to helping spread the word about the vital role of locally produced medical isotopes in Canadian and global health care.”

The Coalition has already begun engaging with local partners, including the region’s Indigenous communities to build upon the isotopes work already happening in this area. In 2019, the Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON) and Bruce Power entered into a collaboration agreement to jointly market new isotopes to support the global fight against cancer, beginning with the production of Lutetium-177. This partnership will positively impact cancer treatment worldwide and create new economic opportunities within SON Territory by establishing new isotope infrastructure at the Bruce Power Site. The partnership is called Gamzook’aamin Aakoziwin, which is Ojibway for “We are teaming up to fight the sickness” and captures the spirit of the partnership: fighting cancer together. 


source: media release



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