Wed, Mar 20, 2013 - Page 8 News List

Nuclear waste poses huge problem

By Wang Chung-ming 王鐘銘

Trying to reduce nuclear waste levels was one out of four of the guiding principles for the management of radioactive waste and this is aimed at lowering output volume. However, the environmental impact statement only mentioned incineration and compression as methods for reducing nuclear waste and completely ignored other, more effective methods.

In its environmental impact statement, the AEC provided numbers on current and projected levels of high-level radioactive waste.

According to these estimates, assuming the nation’s four nuclear power stations were to operate for another 40 years, we have to date already produced approximately 42 percent of the total projected level of radioactive waste.

Viewed from another perspective, it means that if nuclear power were abolished immediately, 60 percent of the projected nuclear waste will never be produced.

Apart from coming up with ways to solve the problem of that 40 percent existing nuclear waste, the public needs to do one even more important thing: Stop operations of the three existing nuclear power plans and halt construction of the fourth. This way the nation could minimize its output volume at the source and stop nuclear waste from being produced ever again.

Wang Chung-ming is a member of the executive committee of the north coast branch of the Taiwan Environmental Protection Union.

Translated by Drew Cameron

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