Mon, Feb 17, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Groups to stage anti-nuclear run

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Members of anti-nuclear organizations perform a skit in front of Taipei Guest House on Ketagalan Boulevard in Taipei yesterday in connection to an event warning of the threat of nuclear disaster.

Photo: CNA

Anti-nuclear groups announced that they will hold a “Run Away From Nuclear” event on March 29 in Taipei as they performed a skit yesterday on Ketagalan Boulevard in which they pretended to flee radiation leaked from a nuclear power plant.

With the sound of nuclear alarm sirens in the background, performers wearing radiation suits put radioactive hazard trefoil stickers on signs with Taipei’s famous landmarks drawn on them to signify that all of Taipei could be contaminated if an accident occurred at one of the nuclear power plants in northern Taiwan.

Taiwan has three operational nuclear power plants — the Jinshan Nuclear Power Plant in Shihmen District (石門), New Taipei City (新北市), Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant in Wanli District (萬里), New Taipei City, and Ma-anshan Nuclear Power Plant in Ma-anshan (馬鞍山), Pingtung County.

The skit also included a person dressed in a panda costume to mimic the Taipei Zoo’s panda cub Yuan Zai (圓仔) and a person holding a picture of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), with a voice-over saying that even they could not escape from the radiation should an accident happen.

Anti-nuclear Alliance of Fathers convener Liou Gin-show (劉俊秀), a professor at National Chiao Tung University, said that according to his calculation, the occurrence rate of a nuclear disaster is about 1 in 500 — which is higher than the rate of winning NT$200 in the bimonthly Uniform-Invoice Lottery.

“If a nuclear disaster occurs at one of the plants, between 4 million and 5 million people would have to be evacuated from the Greater Taipei area, and that is only based on an evacuation ranging between 20km and 30km from the plants, not to say the 80km radius evacuation zone recommended by the US, and we do not even have the ability to evacuate 4 or 5 million people,” he said.

Anti-nuclear Alliance of Fathers executive director Kobe Chih (池國平) said the group decided to hold a run because fleeing is the first thing people would do in a nuclear accident, but “we also want the government to know that it is impossible to mount an effective response to a disaster when so many people are trying to flee at the same time.”

Taiwan Environmental Protection Union member and National Taiwan University’s atmospheric sciences professor Gloria Hsu (徐光蓉) said Taiwan is not short of power, because electricity generated by nuclear power accounts for only 6 percent of the total power supply, and can be replaced by improving electrical transmission efficiency or energy-conservation measures.

The groups urged the government to retire the three operational nuclear power plants as planned and stop constructing the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in Gongliao (貢寮), New Taipei City, to provide a safe, nuclear-free living environment for everyone.

The 7km running event will begin at 7am and start from Ketagalan Boulevard.

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