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Confusion and secrecy surround China’s proposed uranium processing plant in Jiangmen,

questionflag-ChinaExperts call for more details on Guangdong uranium plant, South China Morning Post,  Olga Wong and Minnie Chan  Concern over sketchy nature of details and possible radiation risks from proposed nuclear development in Guangdong.

Nuclear experts and green activists have called for more information from the Guangdong government after limited details were released about its proposal for a uranium processing plant in Jiangmen, about 100 kilometres from Hong Kong.

An announcement by the Jiangmen City Development and Reform Bureau said the 230-hectare plant would carry out uranium conversion, enrichment and fuel fabrication.

But the three-page statement, issued last Thursday, did not make it clear whether the plant, in the Longwan industrial district of Zhishanzhen, would perform spent fuel reprocessing – recycling of old fuel rods that could emit high doses of radiation – or what measures would be used to avoid radiation leaks……

“My concern is that poor protective measures could lead to pollution of food chains by the leakage of uranium dust,” Dr Luk Bing-lam, past chairman of the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers’ nuclear division, said.

Uranium dust could cause leukaemia if absorbed by the human body, he said.

“Placing the plant in an industrial park instead of a remote area could also present security issues,” he added. “What if uranium gets stolen and sold for making dirty bombs?”

Placing the plant in an industrial park instead of a remote area could also present security issues. What if uranium gets stolen and sold for making dirty bombs?

Luk said the plant seemed to involve processing of natural uranium, which would emit radiation relatively higher than that from granite rock. “But we are not 100 per cent sure given the limited information made available by the government,” he added….. affected villagers had agreed to move to make way for the plant.

Zheng Qian, a 58-year-old representative of Lianzhu Village, said the 160 residents would move to a new site the same size as their village near the government headquarters. They were given a relocation fee of HK$220,000 and a construction fee for their houses. “It’s a desirable arrangement for a village as remote as ours,” Zheng said.

One villager said he would just have to accept the “reality” of the situation, but a motorcycle driver living in the area said the plant was incompatible with tourism in nearby Zhuhai .

“The safer the government says it is, the more worried I am,” he said. “This government cannot be trusted.”



July 11, 2013 - Posted by | China, reprocessing, secrets,lies and civil liberties, Uranium

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