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Taiwan not to get nuclear submarines, calls on Australia for help against China

Taiwanese Foreign Minister warns his country is preparing for war with China, asks Australia for help, ABC,  by defence correspondent Andrew Greene and Stan Grant 4 Oct 21,  Taiwan’s Foreign Minister warns his nation is preparing for war with China and urges Australia to increase intelligence sharing and security cooperation as Beijing intensifies a campaign of military intimidation.

Key points:

  • Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu warns of looming war with China and urges closer cooperation with Australia
  • Dozens of Chinese military aircraft have flown into Taiwanese airspace in recent days
  • Mr Wu has also thanked Australia for supporting Taiwan’s bid to join a new trade pact

Dozens of aircraft from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) have flown sorties into Taiwan’s Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ) since Friday, prompting the self-ruled island to scramble its own military jets.

Speaking to the ABC’s China Tonight program, Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu declared that if the PLA were to launch an actual strike, his democratic state would be ready to repel it……………

Australia does not formally recognise Taiwan diplomatically, but the federal government regularly calls for a “peaceful resolution” of differences between China and the small independent nation through dialogue and without the threat or use of force or coercion.

A communique issued after last month’s AUSMIN meetings between Australia and the United States declared that “both sides stated their intent to strengthen ties with Taiwan, which is a leading democracy and a critical partner for both countries”.

Taiwan endorses new AUKUS pact, won’t seek its own nuclear submarines

Taiwan has also welcomed the recent establishment of the AUKUS strategic partnership between Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as the growing activity between the Quad allies, the US, India, Australia and Japan.
……………….The Taiwanese Foreign Minister said that unlike Australia, his nation would not be trying to acquire nuclear-powered submarines, because it has a “different war strategy”.

Defence analyst Professor Clinton Fernandes from the University of New South Wales warns it would be difficult for the US and allies to prevent any invasion attempt by China………..  https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-10-04/taiwan-preparing-for-war-with-china/100511294

October 5, 2021 Posted by | politics international, Taiwan, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Taiwan says 19 Chinese aircraft including nuclear-capable bombers have invaded its airspace

Taiwan says 19 Chinese aircraft including nuclear-capable bombers have invaded its airspace, Independent, 6 Sept 21,

Taiwan dispatched combat aircraft to warn the Chinese planes and deployed the missile defence system to monitor them
Namita Singh  Taiwan has accused China of a huge military incursion in its air defence identification zone (ADIZ), saying that at least 19 chinese military aircraft, including fighters and nuclear-capable bombers were detected on Sunday.

Taiwan’s defence ministry said they issued radio warnings to the crews after they tracked the 19 planes including ten J-16 and four Su-30 fighters,……. (Subscribers only)   https://rinj.press/2021-fpmag/march/are-distancing-and-lockdown-mandates-a-violation-of-civil-liberties/

September 6, 2021 Posted by | Taiwan, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Taiwan Shuts Another Reactor as Part of Nuclear-Free Goal,


Taiwan Shuts Another Reactor as Part of Nuclear-Free Goal, Jul 7, 2021, Power, by Darrell Proctor

Taiwan’s move to end the country’s use of nuclear power continues, with Unit 1 of the Kuosheng Nuclear Power Plant being shut down. The reactor was taken offline at the end of June, six months ahead of its scheduled Dec. 27 retirement, with officials saying spent fuel-storage capacity constraints meant the unit could not be refueled…..

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen has made closing the country’s nuclear power plants a goal of her administration, saying the three remaining reactors will go offline by mid-2025. The 985-MW Kuosheng unit, which officials said generated about 3% of the nation’s total electricity, is the third of what were six operating reactors to be shuttered……

Decommissioning Plan

Taipower first proposed its decommissioning plan for Kuosheng Unit 1 in 2018, and it was approved by the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) in October 2020. The plan included construction of a dry storage facility for used fuel, but a dispute between the city of New Taipei and Taipower has delayed the project.

Officials in New Taipei have yet to issue a permit for the storage facility, which would house the used fuel rods from Unit 1. The New Taipeil government has said it does not want a permanent spent nuclear fuel storage facility within the city……..

Tsai, who took over as Taiwan’s first female president in 2016, is the leader of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). The DPP has championed a “nuclear-free homeland.” The president in her opening remarks at the renewable energy-focused EnergyTaiwan event in October 2020 called on Taiwan to be “a leading center of green energy in the Asia-Pacific region.”

New policy initiatives have supported that goal, including amendments to the country’s Electricity Act that mandated nuclear power generation be ended no later than 2025. The government has said it expects moving away from coal-fired and nuclear power, and support of gas-fired generation and renewable energy, will generate about $36 billion in investment in the country’s energy sector by 2025, along with creating 20,000 jobs………..

Voters also on Aug. 28 will be asked about a plan to restart construction of the Lungmen Nuclear Power Plant 4. That plant, designed with two General Electric advanced BWR reactors and generation capacity of 2,700 MW, was expected to be completed in 2004 after construction began in 1999. Numerous delays, cost overruns, and government opposition put the project on hold in 2014. Even if voters approve a restart, analysts have said it’s unlikely the project would resume under the current administration. https://www.powermag.com/taiwan-shuts-another-reactor-as-part-of-nuclear-free-goal/

July 8, 2021 Posted by | decommission reactor, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan on its path toward denuclearization

Taiwan on its path toward denuclearization. The Taiwanese government shut
down the No. 1 generator at its Kuosheng Nuclear Power Plant in Wanli
District, New Taipei City, on Thursday (July 1) to prepare for the unit’s
full closure.

The nuclear generator went online on Dec. 28, 1981. A General
Electric Boiling Water Reactors Type-6 model, the unit was licensed to run
for 40 years, which will expire on Dec. 27, 2021. It has produced more than
270 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity for the past 40 years as
well as 800 tons of radioactive waste, according to the Environment
Information Center.

The generator is being decommissioned early because the
spent fuel pool is nearly at capacity. If the generator keeps operating,
there will be not be enough space to store nuclear waste, the Taiwan Power
Company (TPC) explained.

 Taiwan News 4th July 2021

https://www.taiwannews.com.tw/en/news/4239735

July 6, 2021 Posted by | decommission reactor, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan’s strategy to phaseout nuclear energy and move to renewables

The Taiwan Government have plans to phase out nuclear power generation by
2025. Nuclear power installed capacity decreased from 4.9GW to 3.8GW, at a
negative CAGR 1.2%. The capacity will reach zero by 2025 as per government
plans.

Taiwan was prompted to rethink its nuclear power program in 2011, in
the wake of the Fukushima disaster in Japan. This led to the government
placing one of its upcoming nuclear reactors on standby and postponing the
construction of the other indefinitely.

Existing reactors are set to be
decommissioned after their useful life is over. Taiwan intends to fill the
gap created by the retirement of its nuclear power plants with renewable
power capacity. To support the development of renewable energy, the
government passed the Renewable Energy Development Act in 2009 (further
amended in 2019) which set a target of 27GW of installed capacity coming
from renewables by 2025.

 

Power Technology 28th June 2021

July 1, 2021 Posted by | politics, Taiwan | Leave a comment

United States considered nuclear strike on China over Taiwan in 1958, classified documents reveal  

United States considered nuclear strike on China over Taiwan in 1958, classified documents reveal  https://www.scmp.com/news/world/united-states-canada/article/3134511/united-states-considered-nuclear-strike-china-over

The US also assumed that the Soviet Union would aid China and retaliate with nuclear weapons, according to the documents

Former military analyst Daniel Ellsberg is famous for his 1971 leak to US media of a top-secret Pentagon study on the Vietnam war known as the Pentagon Papers

US military planners pushed for nuclear strikes on mainland China in 1958 to protect Taiwan from an invasion by Communist forces, classified documents posted online by Daniel Ellsberg of The Pentagon Papers television show.

US planners also assumed that the Soviet Union would aid China and retaliate with nuclear weapons – a price they deemed worth paying to protect Taiwan, according to the document, first reported by The New York Times.

Former military analyst Ellsberg posted online the classified portion of a top-secret document on the crisis that had been only partially declassified in 1975.

Ellsberg, now 90, is famous for his 1971 leak to US media of a top-secret Pentagon study on the Vietnam war known as the Pentagon Papers.

llsberg told the Times that he copied the top-secret Taiwan crisis study in the early 1970s, and is releasing it as tensions mount between the United States and China over Taiwan.

Had an invasion taken place, General Nathan Twining, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the time, “made it clear that the United States would have used nuclear weapons against Chinese airbases to prevent a successful air interdiction campaign,” the document’s authors wrote.

If this did not stop an invasion, then there was “no alternative but to conduct nuclear strikes deep into China as far north as Shanghai,” the document said, paraphrasing Twining.

In the event, US president Dwight D Eisenhower decided to rely initially on conventional weapons.

The 1958 crisis ended when Communist forces halted artillery strikes on islands controlled by Taiwan, leaving the area under the control of Nationalist forces under Chiang Kai-shek.

China considers Taiwan to be a rebel province that will one day return to the mainland’s fold, by force if necessary.

Washington has recognised Beijing since 1979, but maintains relations with Taipei and is its most important military ally.

In recent months the Chinese air force has increased incursions into Taiwan’s air defence identification zone.

The 1958 crisis ended when Communist forces halted artillery strikes on islands controlled by Taiwan, leaving the area under the control of Nationalist forces under Chiang Kai-shek.

China considers Taiwan to be a rebel province that will one day return to the mainland’s fold, by force if necessary.

Washington has recognised Beijing since 1979, but maintains relations with Taipei and is its most important military ally.


In recent months the Chinese air force has increased incursions into Taiwan’s air defence identification zone.

May 24, 2021 Posted by | history, politics international, Taiwan, USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear plants a big security risk

Nuclear plants a big security risk,  https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/editorials/archives/2021/05/10/2003757127 By Henry Sokolski   

As Taiwan’s August referendum on completing its Fourth Nuclear Power Plant approaches, one question that has not yet been fully considered is to what extent this and Taiwan’s other three plants are military liabilities — radioactive targets that China aims to attack. At best, a threatened strike or an intentional near-miss against one plant would likely force the government to shut the other nuclear plants down as a precaution. At worst, a strike could produce Chernobyl-like contamination, forcing the evacuation of millions.

Some partial, temporary defenses are possible and should be pursued, but ultimately, the smart money is on substituting non-nuclear alternatives for these reactors as soon as possible.

As Ian Easton noted last month in these pages, Beijing released a 2013 internal course book on Taiwan’s military geography that spotlighted a potential amphibious landing area at Fulong Beach where Taiwan’s fourth incomplete nuclear plant sits (“Ian Easton On Taiwan: Are Taiwan’s nuclear plants safe from Beijing?” April 12, page 6).The military handbook also highlighted Xialiao Beach, which hosts Taiwan’s Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant in Wanli District (萬里).

In a separate 2014 People’s Liberation Army (PLA) field manual, Easton noted, Taiwan’s reactors were described as high-value targets that should be temporarily knocked out (for subsequent reopening) with precision weapons fired from helicopters. That is the optimistic plan. However, the PLA appeared uncertain about how surgical its attacks might be

Yet another 2015 PLA guidebook, Easton notes, warned PLA troops that they must be prepared to fight through nuclear “contamination,” and they may need to “wash” themselves off as they complete their invasion.Since these military guidebooks were written, the PLA has acquired thousands of additional highly accurate ballistic and cruise missiles and drones, which make highly precise attacks against Taiwan’s reactors much easier.

What might the consequences of such precision attacks be? Bad to catastrophic. The Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, which I run, recently commissioned a radiological analysis of several Chinese strikes against Taiwan’s nuclear plants. In the least destructive case, the Chinese target one of their missiles just near the reactor — perhaps the plant employees’ parking lot. While the Chinese missile might not kill anyone, Taiwan’s government would likely pull all of their reactors off the grid as a precautionary measure.

That is roughly 10 percent of Taiwan’s electrical production. In addition, residents near the reactors would likely hit the road in massive numbers to evade possible follow-on attacks. These attacks might target the reactors’ grid connection or its emergency diesel generators. This, again, would not necessarily lead to a core meltdown (unless both were hit simultaneously), but would definitely put the population on edge.

That is the best case. Much worse would be a missile or drone strike against the reactor’s control room or reactor core. In these cases, a loss of necessary coolant and radiological release are likely. What the consequences might be depends on the prevailing winds. Here are maps of an attack on the Maanshan plant at Kenting in June and in December. The orange and red areas describe irradiated regions the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would recommend populations be evacuated from.

In either case, the evacuation of many thousands to several million is likely.

Of course, if China hit Taiwan’s spent reactor fuel ponds, the contaminating radiation released would be far greater.

None of this is welcome news. All of it recommends shutting down Taiwan’s nuclear plants as soon as is practical and replacing them with non-nuclear alternatives. At a minimum, completing Taiwan’s fourth reactor should be a nonstarter.

In the interim, Taiwan should remove as much radioactive waste from its spent reactor fuel ponds as possible and place it in hardened, concrete dry storage casks. The US, Euratom nations, and Japan are already doing this; so should Taiwan.

Taiwan should also build emergency spent fuel pond sprinkler and cooling water monitoring systems to reduce the likelihood of spent fuel fires if these pools are hit and water levels become dangerously low. Taiwan also should consider building remote control rooms for its three operating plants, as Japan has done in at least one case.

Finally, it should consider hardening certain structures and actively defending at least against local drone attacks.

As urgent as these steps are, none, however, should be taken with an eye to extending these reactors’ operations. Just the opposite. If Taiwan is serious about its national security, it will replace all of these potential radiological targets with non-nuclear generators as soon as possible.

Henry Sokolski is the executive director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center in Arlington, Virginia, and author of Underestimated: Our Not So Peaceful Nuclear Future. He served as deputy for nonproliferation policy in the office of the US secretary of defense during former US president George H.W. Bush’s administration.

May 10, 2021 Posted by | safety, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan environmentalists to hold anti-nuclear rally in June

Environmentalists to hold anti-nuclear rally in June, Focus Taiwan, By Wu Hsin-yun and Lee Hsin-Yin)   Taipei, March 13 (CNA) Environmentalists will hold a rally on June 5 to oppose the use of nuclear power and keep the 4th Nuclear Power Plant mothballed ahead of an August referendum on the plant’s fate.

At an event commemorating the 10th anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake, a nationwide anti-nuclear alliance of more than 100 groups urged the public to push back against groups that support the development of nuclear power, citing the harm left by the devastating earthquake.

Independent lawmaker Freddy Lim (林昶佐), who attended the event, said the issue of nuclear energy has gone beyond politics, and people should take the responsibility to say no to it instead of leaving nuclear waste to the next generation.

The alliance urged the public to voice its opposition during a national referendum vote in August, when one of the questions will be: “Do you agree that the 4th Nuclear Power Plant be activated for commercial operations?”……… https://focustaiwan.tw/society/202103130014

March 15, 2021 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Nuclear power not an option for Taiwan,

March 11, 2021 Posted by | politics, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan. Nuclear power plant referendum set to take place in August

Nuclear power plant referendum set to take place in August,  Taipei, Jan. 22 (CNA) A national referendum on activating the long-mothballed Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei will be held on Aug. 28, after the Central Election Commission (CEC) confirmed the date that was already set in stone in the Referendum Act.

The Referendum Act stipulates that national referendums can only be held once every two years starting from 2021 and only on the fourth Saturday of August during those years.

The CEC said in a statement Friday that polling stations will be open on Aug. 28 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m………

Critics….. have warned of the safety hazards of the plant in particular and nuclear power in general, citing the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant meltdown in Japan.  ………   https://focustaiwan.tw/politics/202101220020

January 23, 2021 Posted by | politics, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Nuclear corruption – this time it’s Taiwan

December 3, 2020 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwanese protest plan to dump water from Japan nuclear plant into sea

November 21, 2020 Posted by | Japan, opposition to nuclear, Taiwan, wastes | Leave a comment

Taiwan furthers its departure from nuclear power, with more unused fuel rods sent back to USA

More fuel rods at fourth nuclear power plant sent back to U.S. https://focustaiwan.tw/society/202010210027

(By Flor Wang and Wang Chao-yu)  10/21/2020 Taipei, Oct. 21 (CNA) More fuel rods at a mothballed nuclear power plant in New Taipei were shipped back to the United States on Wednesday as part of government to honor its promise to make Taiwan nuclear-free by 2025.efforts

Five or six trucks carrying an unknown number of unused fuel rods from the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant arrived at Keelung Port in the early hours and were then loaded into several containers that departed for the U.S. at around noon.

However, the authorities in charge did not disclose whether this is the last batch of fuel rods being sent back to America.

A Legislative Yuan resolution that was passed in 2018 demands that state-run Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) must send back all 1,744 unused fuel rods from the plant to America by the end of this year.

Taipower has said the task will cost NT$700 million (US$24.1 million).

In July 2018, the first batch of 160 rods was transported back to its U.S. supplier — Global Nuclear Fuel Americas, LLC — which was followed by three more similar operations as of August 2019, the Taipei-based China Times reported on Tuesday.

On Oct. 15, Atomic Energy Council Minister Hsieh Shou-shing (謝曉星) said 240 fuel rods at the power plant were still waiting to be transported to the U.S. — a delay caused by travel restrictions triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, disposing of the 1,744 fuel rods from the plant could save about NT$100 million in maintenance costs per year.

The government has spent NT$283.8 billion on building the plant in New Taipei’s Gongliao District, but it has been mothballed since 2014 due to public concern over the use of nuclear power.

 

 

October 22, 2020 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, politics international, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan environmentalists mark Chernobyl nuclear disaster anniversary, call for renewables not nuclear

Anniversary of Chernobyl sees anti-nuclear appeals. https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2020/04/28/2003735431

Two environmental groups issued online statements over the weekend to mark the 34th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster on Sunday and call for the abolition of nuclear power in Taiwan.

The government should bolster safety mechanisms at the nation’s nuclear power plants, safely handle nuclear waste and educate the public on the risks of nuclear energy ahead of a referendum next year on whether to resume work on the mothballed Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, the National Nuclear Abolition Action Platform wrote on Facebook on Saturday.

The Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster, which was caused by an explosion at the plant’s No. 4 reactor during maintenance, resulted in several thousand deaths, and the area around the plant would remain uninhabitable long into the future, it said.

The anniversary of the 1986 disaster should highlight the dangers of using nuclear power, it added.

Taiwan’s three operating nuclear power plants have been in operation for nearly 40 years, the Taiwan Environmental Protection Union wrote on Facebook on Sunday.

“Can the plants still safely operate, or should they be decommissioned? Policies on the plants are a major compromise between power needs and hopes for decommissioning,” it said.

Some people are concerned that the plants could be contaminating the air or the water supply, it added.

Radioactive waste from the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant disaster in Japan has still not been completely cleaned up, showing that coping with nuclear disasters is beyond human capability, the union said.

The dangers of nuclear power — as evidenced by the atomic bombs used in World War II, and the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters — should not be overlooked in favor of the economy’s demand for power, it said.

The government should focus its efforts on energy transformation and push for the development of renewable energy, it added.

There is a pressing need to combat climate change, but nuclear power is not a viable alternative, the union said.

“There is a cheaper, faster and safer option to reduce carbon emissions, and that is for the government to put all of its effort into energy efficiency and the development of sustainable energy,” it said.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | opposition to nuclear, Taiwan | Leave a comment

Taiwan searches for a solution to its nuclear waste problem

Searching for a Permanent Storage Solution https://topics.amcham.com.tw/2020/02/permanent-storage-solution/

BY TIMOTHY FERRYON FEBRUARY 19, 2020  Permanent storage in deep geological repositories is the current international standard for final disposal of nuclear waste, but in practice this solution has so far proven extremely difficult to accomplish.

The U.S. government has de-funded its deep geological repository at Yucca Mountain, and most nations have yet to begin development of similar facilities. Finland is the closest to successfully completing deep geological repository. Its Onkalo site is now in the final approval stage, and should begin accepting nuclear waste early in this decade.

Executives from U.S. startup Deep Isolation visited Taiwan last fall with an innovative solution that could serve as either interim or permanent storage. Deploying technologies developed in the oil and gas industry, it would use directional drilling approximately 1 kilometer deep and then another kilometer horizontally. The spent fuel would then be lowered down the borehole inside nickel-chromium-molybdenum alloy canisters.

Developed by University of California at Berkeley physicist Richard Muller, the solution is based on proven technologies. The canisters can even be retrieved. The company has yet to utilize the technology in an actual case, though, and Taipower may be wary of being first in the world to implement it.

In the meantime, Taiwan is continuing a search for its own site for a deep geological depository. The Atomic Energy Council hopes to have a site ready by 2055.

For now, however, the focus is on developing interim solutions for the spent fuel in the cooling pools. Both New Taipei City and Taipower are optimistic that solutions can be found.

“The election is over and the noise is quieting down, so maybe now will be a better time to solve the issue,” says Edward H.C. Chang (張學植), director of Tai-power’s Department of Nuclear Backend Management.

February 20, 2020 Posted by | Taiwan, wastes | Leave a comment