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DPP readies for push to get anti-nuke referendum

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is gearing up for a renewed push to eliminate nuclear reactors, the United Evening News (UEN) reported yesterday. Efforts will be made by the opposition to resist ongoing nuclear development and propel forward legislation mandating a nuclear-free nation.

DPP Legislator Cheng Li-chiun (鄭麗君) said that “the year 2013 is key” because the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant is scheduled to undergo fuel rod loading soon.

Urgency in opposing the project stems from the imminent loading of the fuel rods within the next year or more. The China Times reported on Jan. 10 that Taipower's Chairman of the Board Hwang Jung-chiou on the same day told the Legislature that Taipower would probably apply for the Atomic Energy Council's (AEC) permission to load nuclear fuel rods at Fourth Nuclear by June of next year.

The Fourth Nuclear Power Plant's official name is Longmen Nuclear Electricity Plant (龍門核能發電廠). It is run by Taiwan Electric Power Co. (Taipower), a national enterprise.

The “Nuclear-Free Homeland Promotion Act” (非核家園推動法) draft will be debated in the Legislature in March, the UEN said. The bill would prohibit any further construction of nuclear-powered plants, and also will mandate technical standards for nuclear equipment.

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