Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers yesterday criticized the Atomic Energy Council (AEC) over its reported decision to reactivate a nuclear reactor in exchange for a NT$36 million (US$1.2 million) project from Taiwan Power Co (Taipower).
The Chinese-language Next Magazine reported on Tuesday that the council had secured limited bids for two research projects from Taipower, for NT$17.5 million and NT$18.7 million respectively.
Taipower used the bids in exchange for the council’s authorization to reactivate the No. 1 reactor at the Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant in Wanli District (萬里), New Taipei City (新北市), the magazine said.
“Now we know why the AEC approved the reactivation on June 18, despite the fact that there are still many safety concerns about the reactor,” DPP Legislator Lin Shu-fen (林淑芬) said.
Numerous problems with the reactor have been found since March, including seven broken anchor bolts and 20 cracked bolts, and cracks up to 30cm in length have been found in the core shroud of the reactor, Lin said.
Lin said he suspected the council had failed to avoid a conflict of interest, as at least four experts on the reactor safety review board had connections to the AEC’s Institute of Nuclear Energy Research.
Taipower has failed to respond to more than 100 questions raised by experts at a safety review meeting, DPP Legislator Cheng Li-chiun (鄭麗君) said.
However, she said, experts signed a letter of consent one week before the AEC authorized the reactivation of the nuclear reactor.
“The timing is highly -suspicious,” Cheng said.
Taipower denied the report, saying the projects were listed as limited tendering because the research institute is the only institution in Taiwan with the technology to do the research.
The bids were awarded in February and March, months before approval was granted, the company added.
A study published by online booking platform Expedia revealed searches for travel to Taipei have ballooned 2,786 percent following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions due to the city being a “designation dupe” for Seoul. The TikTok trend for duping — referring to substituting a designation for a more inexpensive alternative — helped propel interest in Taipei, it said in a consumer survey titled “Unpack ‘24,” which was conducted from September to October in 14 countries. Location dupes are “every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love,” Expedia trend tracker Melanie Fish said of the year’s popular alternatives, which
SAFETY IN REGULATION: The proposal states that Chiayi should assess whether it is viable to establish such a district and draft rules to protect clients and sex workers The Chiayi City Council passed a motion yesterday to assess the viability of establishing a regulated red-light district. The council yesterday held its last session of the year, at which its fiscal 2024 budget was approved, along with 61 other proposals. The proposal to assess the viability of establishing a red-light district was put forward by independent Chiayi City Councilor Molly Yen (顏色不分藍綠支持性專區顏色田慎節). The proposal cited 2011 amendments to the Social Order Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法), which stipulate that city and county governments can pass autonomous regulations on the sex trade to manage the industry and guarantee industry workers’ rights. A ban on the
A small-scale protest that called on the government to cancel its plan to welcome Indian migrant workers in a bid to tackle Taiwan’s labor shortage was held in Taipei yesterday. During the protest, comprised of a few dozen people staged in front of the Presidential Office on Ketagalan Boulevard, the protest’s chief initiator, a woman identified only as “Yuna” said they wanted the central government to reconsider allowing migrant workers from India to enter Taiwan. Most people in Taiwan had little knowledge about the potential plan to allow in Indian migrant workers until a report in the media last month, she
STABILITY AND CHANGE: Flagging in recent polls, Ko this week pledged to maintain President Tsai’s foreign policy, with an emphasis on improving China relations Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday reiterated that he is “deep-green at heart” in response to accusations that he is pivoting his campaign to align closer with the ideology of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the face of flagging polls. Ko made the remark at an agricultural policy conference in Taipei, repeating his comments from an interview with CTS News a day earlier. Ko told the CTS host that he would continue to pursue President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) national defense and foreign policy in general, but with an emphasis on establishing a rapport with