From: 101 East

Taiwan’s nuclear debate

101 East looks at energy policies in Taiwan and the human cost of electricity.

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Taiwan wants to extend the life of its oldest nuclear power plant and increase reliance on nuclear power for its energy consumption.

But critics are furious.

The island is struggling to find a permanent dumping ground for its nuclear waste.

Some of it is stored near poor indigenous communities in return for money and development.

Orchid island, home to about 4,000 aboriginal Taiwanese, provides temporary storage for nearly 100,000 barrels of Taiwan’s low level nuclear waste.

In the southeast of Taiwan, Nantian village is seen as an ideal permanent storage location for the nuclear waste.

But tribal leader Vuvu Paulus hopes her community will not agree to the government’s plans to store nuclear waste at Nantian village.

Even though nuclear fuels produce clean energy, it generates radioactive waste.

If not safely managed, it can harm people and the environment for thousands of years.

In this edition of 101 East, we look at energy policies in Taiwan and ask: What is the human cost of electricity here?

This episode of 101 East airs from Thursday, March 4, 2010 at the following times GMT: Thursday: 1230; Friday: 0300; Saturday: 0530, 1730; Sunday: 1130; Monday: 1630; Tuesday: 1430; Wednesday: 0830; Thursday: 0630.