Tue, Jan 11, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Government still committed to end of nuclear power

UNWAVERING A Cabinet spokesman denied a report that it was backing away from a pledge to phase out the nation's nuclear energy in 40 years

By Ko Shu-ling and Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTERS

The Executive Yuan yesterday repeated its resolve to pursue a nuclear-free homeland and said that its plan to phase out the nation's three nuclear power plants in 40 years remains unchanged.

Cabinet Spokesman Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) denied a report that the government planned to extend the service of the nation's three operational nuclear power plants from 40 to 60 years, and repeated the government's support for legislation that would formalize the goal of attaining a nuclear-free homeland.

"While our determination to achieve the ultimate goal of a nuclear-free homeland remains unchanged, we hope the legislature passes the draft bill promoting a nuclear-free home as soon as possible, Chen said.

The Executive Yuan approved the draft bill of the promotion of a nuclear-free home in May 2003. The bill would ban the development of nuclear weapons, gradually phase out the use of nuclear power and boost the use of renewable energy to meet future needs.

Under an action plan mapped out by the Cabinet's Council for the Promotion of a Nuclear-free Home, the Executive Yuan would inject NT$3 billion a year to reach the goals set down in the bill.

The Cabinet hopes to see 10 percent of the nation's power generated by renewable-energy sources by 2010 and 12 percent by 2020.

The Cabinet also hopes to see the annual production value of the clean-energy industry increase from NT$1.5 billion to NT$10 billion.

The action plan seeks to ease regulations on land acquisition for wind-power plants to boost the development of renewable energy.

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Secretary-General Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄) yesterday said that the DPP's central standing committee passed a resolution opposing the building of new nuclear power plants on April 22, 2003, and that the party will never betray its core principles.

"Pursing a non-nuclear homeland and ensuring Taiwan's sustainable development is a consistent and long-term goal for the DPP, which is also a consensus agreed on by both the ruling and opposition parties in 2002," Chang said.

"[A non-nuclear homeland] has already become an ideal recognized by all parts of society, and we are resolute that any policy pertaining to nuclear power has to be based on this public consensus," Chang said.

"The DPP will not accept any suggestion that goes against the principle of a `non-nuclear homeland' since it violates our long-term core value and strays from mainstream public opinion," he said.

This story has been viewed 4142 times.
TOP top