Hung denies conflict with Chu on energy
Kuomintang ( KMT) presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu ( ) has denied reports that her stance on the future of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant ( ) at Longmen contradicts the viewpoint of party leader Eric Chu ( ).
“I am not sure on which parts we do not agree. Does Chairman Chu really not support nuclear power? I do not think he has ever said this to me,” Hung said at a New Taipei City event commemorating those killed in the 8-23 Artillery ( ) Bombardment in which Chu was also in attendance
In an earlier statement, Chu said that a “nuclear free homeland” was a collective pursuit that would be continually implemented. Noting that the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant had already been sealed, any proposal to bring it into operation would require a referendum and hence an uneasy hurdle.
On Saturday, Hung posted “Energy autonomy is a necessary condition for national survival” on her official campaign site and Facebook page, criticizing the proposed policies of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairwoman Tsai Ingwen ( ) in which she accused her rival of using campaign tactics in order to “evade responsibility” on the matter. The DPP position has advocated for the phasing out of nuclear power on Taiwan.
Hung’s post also argued that it was inaccurate to analogize Taiwan’s experience with Germany’s nuclear power phase out, or Japan’s nuclear policy after the Fukushima nuclear disaster following a magnitude 9 earthquake and ensuing tsunami in 2011. “The reality is that the Fukushima nuclear disaster did not cause any fatalities. The lives lost were due to the earthquake and tsunami,” she wrote. Hung accused the DPP of “false information and logic” in “fanning the flames of fear” of the population on the issue of nuclear power. She also emphasized that the energy expenses for the Japanese and German people were three times higher than those in Taiwan.
With regards to Hung’s online statement, Chu responded that she was emphasizing the need for guaranteeing Taiwan’s energy supply and that reactivating the plant in Longmen was an option should the situation arise. Since the decision to seal the plant was made by the Legislative Yuan, any reconsideration in policy would also need to be implemented in accordance with the law, Chu added.
“Politicians have to speak honestly and frankly on the matter,” Hung said after echoing Chu’s comments above.
She added that everyone wants to support a nuclear free homeland, but that it was important to consider the methods and steps needed to reach that goal.