Former vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) said yesterday that she is considering starting a petition in Taipei City for a nuclear referendum to decide whether fuel rods should be inserted into the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s (新北市) Gongliao District (貢寮).
A similar proposal by Lu to hold a referendum in New Taipei City had been rejected on Thursday last week by the Executive Yuan’s Referendum Review Committee, which said the issue “concerns energy policy affecting the nation’s electricity supply, power reserves, industrial sectors, environment and other important matters” and is “an important national policy matter not suitable for a local referendum.”
The petition drive for a local nuclear referendum is not over yet, said Lu yesterday.
“There are three nuclear power plants in New Taipei City. It does not make sense to strip residents of the right to determine whether they want to face threats of a nuclear disaster and contamination by nuclear waste,” Lu said at an anti-nuclear fundraising luncheon.
A proposal for a referendum on the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant has also been submitted in Yilan County, which is within the evacuation radius of the nuclear power plant, she said.
Lu said that the central government has no right to take away the right to hold a referendum for residents who live in the mandatory evacuation zone, which includes Taipei, New Taipei City, Keelung City and Yilan County.
Lu and several anti-nuclear groups have always said that people living within a 50km radius of a nuclear power plant should have first priority on deciding whether it should go into operation.