Keen said that under her mandate, public safety must come first and nowhere does it say she should consider the effect a shutdown would have on the production of isotopes. "Under the law, the commission did not have the authority to take the issue of isotopes into consideration when making its decision," she said.
Keen said the government implicitly recognized this by enacting emergency legislation to suspend the commission's powers and get the reactor up and running.
"[This] would not have been necessary if the commission already had that responsibility," she said. "The fact is, it did not."
Parliament voted unanimously to override the safety regulator's objections and the reactor was restarted on Dec. 16.