Taiwan’s fourth nuclear power plant, the $8.9 billion Longmen Nuclear Power Plant project, is threatened as more than 68,000 protestors took part in marches over the weekend to oppose its completion.
Taiwan is an island located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, the same tectonically active region in which Japan is exists, and fears over the disaster that occurred at the Fukushima power plant have turned the Taiwanese populace against the industry. Taiwan’s three existing nuclear power plants are situated near to the coast on active fault lines, much like the Daiichi Power plant at Fukushima, increasing fears of a similar incident.
Wu Lein, an 87 year old man who lives near to the site of the new power plant gave voice to the peoples protest by stating that “nuclear power is toxic. It is dangerous. I would have come to protest even if I were 100.”
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Ma Ying-jeou, the President of Taiwan, has promised to reduce carbon emissions to 2000 levels by 2025, whilst at the same time phasing out nuclear power. Achieving both targets will be a difficult ask as they work against each other somewhat.
Jason Lin, a spokesman for the opposition Democratic Progessive Party, said: “We demand construction of the No. 4 nuclear power plant to stop immediately and that Taiwan phase out the use of nuclear power. After the Fukushima crisis, people are awakened to the fact that nuclear power isn’t safe.”
The Longmen Nuclear Power Plant was first proposed back in the 1980s, but all work was stopped in 1986 after the Chernobyl disaster. Since then it has suffered various setbacks, but we must wait to see whether this will be the final straw.
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com