Wed, Apr 28, 2010 - Page 2 News List

Aboriginal artifacts found at site of nuclear plant

By Shelley Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Ketagalan of Taiwan Indigenous Culture Alliance yesterday accused government officials of overlooking the destruction of valuable artifacts used by Taiwanese Aborigines 4,500 years ago in order to construct access roads to the Lungmen nuclear power plant.

Legislator Tien Chiu-chin (田秋堇), paleontologists and descendants of Aborigines yesterday told a press conference that they found the Ministry of Economic Affairs' (MOEA) refusal to halt construction of the nuclear power plant’s access roads unacceptable.

The Lungmen nuclear power plant, also known as the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, is currently being constructed in Taipei County’s Gungliao Township (貢寮).

Lin Sheng-yi (林勝義), executive director of the alliance, held up a part of what is believed to be a crucible used by ancestors of the Pingpu Tribe (平埔族) that was found at the power plant construction site and said that carbon dating has shown it to be from the year 2440 BC.

“Scholars from the Academia Sinica and the National Science Council all denied its [the artifact's] value,” Lin said.

Lin wasn’t discouraged and sent a sample to the Beta Analytic Radio Carbon Dating Laboratory in Miami, Florida, which informed him that test results indicated that the sample was from 2440 BC.

“The adhesive used in these artifacts is proof that the articles are manmade, and not naturally occurring,” he said.

Taiwan Paleo-Civilization Research Center's Ho Hsien-jung (何顯榮) also recognized geometric characters that are believed to be early forms of writing found on rocks dug up from the area surrounding the nuclear power plant.

“These artifacts are like tape recordings that our ancestors left us,” Tien said. “Our ancestry comes not only from Emperor Qin Shi Huang, but many other different cultures as well. About a quarter of all Taiwanese have Pingpu blood in their veins.”

Their petitions to halt construction of certain areas near the plant have gone unanswered.

“[Minister of Economic Affairs Shih Yen-hsiang 施顏祥] has vowed to halt construction if the location is indeed an archaeological site. We hope he will keep his word,” Tien said.

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