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July 23, 2017

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54.4 percent of public opposes Nuke 4: survey

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Survey results on the nuclear power issue indicated that 54.4 percent of the public do not support continued construction on the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant even if it can be operated safely, while support for continued construction is only 40.7 percent, representing a drop in support of 4.4 percent, said the Taiwan Institute for Sustainable Energy (TAISE, 台灣永續能源研究基金會) in a press release.

Because of the close connection between continuing to build the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant and future energy options, the survey inquired about public attitudes to future energy sources and found that nuclear power is now the last choice for members of the public (as the fifth preference for 55.2 percent of respondents). A total of 68.3 percent of the public felt that Taiwan ought to emphasize renewable energy sources, such as solar power, hydroelectricity, and wind power, said TAISE.

As for public support for continuing to build the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, TAISE compared results for the past four years of surveys and found that, beginning from 2012, public support continually declined. When compared with 2013, the percentage of respondents "strongly opposed" had risen from 32.6 percent to 33.7 percent, for an increase of 1.1 percent; the percentage of respondents indicating "minimal support" had increased from 19.8 percent in 2013, to 20.7 percent; an increase of 0.9 percent. When compared to the 2013 survey, support for the project this year saw an overall decline of 4.4 percent, indicating a continuing trend toward declining support, TAISE stated.

This year's survey was conducted between Feb. 10 through 16, with 1,099 random sample respondents aged over 18 among the Taiwan public, with 95 percent confidence, and a sampling error within plus or minus 2.96 percentage points, the TAISE said.

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