Backers of nuclear ‘hindering energy transformation’

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

Wed, Aug 15, 2018 - Page 3

Developing green energy is a global trend and should begin with local communities, advocates of renewable energy said yesterday, calling on nuclear power proponents such as former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) not to hinder Taiwan’s energy transformation.

At a news conference in Taipei yesterday, Mom Loves Taiwan chairwoman Gloria Hsu (徐光蓉) and Tai Yan-hui Cultural Education Foundation chief executive Chou Mei-hui (周美惠) blasted nuclear power supporters for proposing two referendums aimed at maintaining the nation’s nuclear power plants.

Initiated by Nuclear Myth Busters founder Huang Shih-hsiu (黃士修) and others, one proposals would ask voters if they agree with scrapping Article 95 of the Electricity Act (電業法), which stipulates that all nuclear facilities should be phased out by 2025.

The other proposal would ask whether voters agree to the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant starting operation.

Ma and former premiers Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) and Simon Chang (張善政), who have signed the referendum petitions, are impeding green energy development by spreading false information, such as that electricity prices would be hiked if the nuclear plants are decommissioned, Hsu said.

Several nuclear power plants in other nations have been closed after their operators were unable to afford their high maintenance costs, while worldwide, investments in renewable energy have surpassed those funding nuclear power, she said.

The government’s goal to phase out nuclear power facilities by 2025 is not a hurried decision, as some people have claimed, but rather too far in the future, Chou said.

The 78-year-old Chou, who used to teach design at Shih Chien University, is regarded as one of the nation’s forerunners for green energy after she introduced Germany’s ideas about energy transformation and recycling to Taiwan more than two decades ago.

Germany has been working to improve its power generation efficiency and pollution control facilities, while Taiwan’s petrochemical, steel and cement makers demand more energy, but are reluctant to curtail pollution, Chou said.