Tue, Jul 31, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Petrochemical project slammed by protest group

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

“We are against scale expansion at the sixth naphtha cracker plant,” protesters called out during a rally in front of Yunlin County Government offices yesterday, urging the government to release the results of a commissioned epidemiological survey report.

With the approval of the Formosa Petrochemical Corp’s fourth phase expansion project of its sixth naphtha cracker plant in Mailiao (麥寮) following an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) meeting last week, a small group of local environmental activists from Yunlin and Changhua counties held a banner reading: “The people’s health is a right that cannot be deprived” during their demonstration.

“Be tough, Commissioner Su [Yunlin County Commissioner Su Chih-feng (蘇治芬)],” they said, requesting that the local government release an epidemiological survey report conducted by National Taiwan University’s College of Public Health, before the next EIA meeting on another scale expansion project at the plant, which is scheduled to take place today.

The report was scheduled to be evaluated at Yunlin County Government meeting yesterday, before the results are released to the public.

However, the protesters said the evaluation comes too late because a scale expansion project was passed last week, without the report as a reference.

“The local government failed to release this report, causing the EIA committee members to proceed with their evaluation without this important information,” Yunlin County Environmental Protection Union chairman and former EIA committee member Chang Tsu-chien (張子見) said, referring to the EIA meeting last week.

He said if the local government has already received the report; it should release the contents to protect the health of people living in Yunlin.

Groups supporting the protest include Taiwan Water Resources Protection Union, the Changhua Medical Alliance and more than 30 civic groups from across the country.

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