[BTNNews] 2018-03-14 Citizens Monitoring Hanbit Nuclear Power Plant

<Original Article>



Life & No-nuke Silk Road team walked 4,000km from Japan to India for 5 months starting in May, 2017. Silk Road invited an expert in the field of nuclear safety and representative of private monitoring organization of Hanbit Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) to a meeting which commemorates the 7th anniversary of Hukushima nuclear accident. Participants of the meeting insisted that the government must operate NPPs in open and transparent mode in order to prevent nuclear accident. They asked the government to allow monitoring of other NPPs by private organization in which local citizens take part in. Im Sang Jae reporter reports the news.

Seven years have passed since Hukushima nuclear accident which caused panic in Asian region.

It was very encouraging for Korean people to hear that President Moon declared “No More NPP”. The ideal goal of nuclear policy is to stop the operation of existing NPPs. But it will take a long time to stop nuclear generation of electricity. During the transition period, the most important task facing us is how to ensure the safety of existing NPPs.

In the midst of such situation, Life & No-nuke Silk Road pilgrims walked 4,000km from Japan to India. The director of Silk Road pilgrimage called a NPP expert and representative of private monitoring organization of Hanbit Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) to a meeting which commemorates the 7th anniversary of Hukushima nuclear accident.

Professor Won Young Lee/Director of Silk Road Pilgrimage

“The main topic I have been thinking over while I walk 4,000km for 10 months was how to stabilize safely 450 NPPs in the Earth and prevent fatal nuclear accidents.”

BeopEung Buddhist Monk/Director of Buddhist Social Policy Research Institute

“I think that citizens, activists, and private experts must gather together and research about the safety of NPP operation. Networking of cooperation would ensure the prevention of nuclear accident, and finally lead to dismantling of NPPs.”

The citizens in Yeonggwang region recognized the accident of inferior devices in Hanbit NPP. They started a voluntary monitoring organization which watch out the closed operation of NPP in 2012 when they experienced a whole blackout.

Thereafter the private monitoring organization of Hanbit NPP upgraded the system which enabled independent activity of nuclear experts who are free from government authority. Yeonggwang monitoring organization is listed as the first case of direct monitoring NPP by citizens in the world.

The representative of Yeonggwang monitoring organization said, “Two principles are very important. The first is to let the citizens take part in verification process of nuclear safety. Secondly, it is important to open nuclear information to the public.”

Jeong Yoon Lee/Representative of Nuclear Safety and Future

The citizens doubt the safe operation of NPP because nuclear information is not open to them. The citizens ask open information and want to take part in the monitoring of NPP. The new government should revise the closed nuclear policy of previous government and increase citizen’s participation and monitoring of NPP.

Life & No-nuke Silk Road would investigate the activities and effects of private monitoring organization of Hanbit NPP. Silk Road team is planning to increase its capacity and efforts in order to spread the opinion about dismantling of NPPs in the future.

BTN news, Im Sang Jae reports.


(Translated by Lee Sang Hoon)

Categories: Event, Media Reports

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