Why Are We Building Seven Nuclear Plants?

9 August, 2012

by Nga Kor Ming

I am shocked by the news that seven locations in Peninsular Malaysia have been earmarked for the building of twin-unit nuclear power plants that will cost the nation a whopping RM21.3 billion.

Although the government has been keeping us in the dark, spokesperson for Malaysian Coalition Against Nuclear (MyCan), Dr Ronald McCoy has revealed that the Malaysia Nuclear Power Corporation (MNPC) chose locations in Kedah (1), Perak (2), Terengganu (2) and Johor (2) to build the nuclear power plants.

One of these locations is Tasek Temenggur at Hulu Perak. Perak Menteri Besar Dato Zambry Abdul Kadir must give an account of this to the people of the state who will be affected by this decision.

The government must reveal the blueprints of the proposed nuclear power plants so that the people can be consulted for such a major decision that will have far-reaching effects.

A crowd of 15,000 gathered for the Himpunan Hijau 2.0 in Kuantan earlier this year to protest against the Lynas rare earth plant.

A Pakatan Rakyat government would never allow the building of any nuclear power plants. While Germany has just announced the closure of 8 mega nuclear plants, the BN government is about to jump on the nuclear bandwagon instead. This is a step in the opposite direction.

MyCan has also expressed disappointment that the Malaysian government would consider nuclear as an energy option when such technologies have been rejected by a growing number of countries.

Prime Minister Najib has announced in December 2010 that the government is building two nuclear power plants worth RM21.3billion to meet growing domestic energy demand. Each of these plants can produce up to 1,000 megawatts of electricity. The two plants are scheduled for completion in 2021 and 2022 respectively.

BN’s low standards of regulation when it comes to nuclear energy is certainly worrisome and it drives fears of a potential ecological disaster. In fact, BN has a track record of going against public opinion in approving the Bukit Koman cyanide gold mining project, the Lynas rare earth plant in Kuantan, and the Kuo Kuang petrochemical project in Pengerang.

With BN’s black record and low regulatory standards, one fears that the future nuclear power plants may lead to unmitigated disasters on a scale that one could only imagine as horrific. – The Rocket

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