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Eight Local Governments Petition for Radioactive Waste Management Facility

Eight Local Governments Petition for Radioactive Waste Management Facility

Posted May. 31, 2004 22:17,   


It was temporarily totaled that five cities or counties of eight area (Eup, Myun, Dong) local self-governing bodies presented a petition to introduce a Radioactive Waste Management Facility (the Nuclear Center).

Consequently, nine local areas in total, including Buan County, Cheonbuk, which is already considered as part of the petition, will compete for the facility.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy (MOCIE), △ Soryong-dong and Okdo-myun in Gunsan, Cheonbuk, △ Keunnam-myun, Kiseong-myun, Buk-myun in Uljin, Kyoungbuk △ Haeri-myun in Kochang, Cheonbuk △ Hongnong-eup, Yeongkwang, Cheonnam △ Saengil-myun in Wando, Cheonnam petitioned with approved signatures of more than a third of all residents over 20 years old attached as of 5 P.M. on May 31, which was deadline for application.

The most approved site is Hongnong-eup in Yeongkwang and 68.16 percent of residents were favor of it. Followingly, Kiseong-myun (44.13 percent), Keunnam-myun (41.75 percent) in Uljin and Soryong-dong in Kunsan (40.46 percent) were rather high in the percentage of approval.

Local self-governing bodies, which didn’t present a petition this time, can send in an application by a head of local government by September 15, the finishing day for preliminary petitions, so it is highly probable that there will be more regions to compete for the facility than right now.

The MOCIE has put “Self-governance and Participation” as the principle of site selection for the Radioactive Waste Management Facility this year, and will conduct the investigation of sites and safety inspections with local residents together.

Also, the MOCIE will ask for the understanding and cooperation of civil organizations through the Energy Round-Table Conference, the Energy Policy Civil-Governmental Forum and other venues.

The Nuclear Center will be decided finally in the end of year through the preliminary request process on September 15, and votes of relevant residents and the main request process at the end of November.

In the meantime, ahead of the residents’ petition, the anti-nuclear countermeasure committee of four areas, Yeongkwang, Kochang, Uljin and Kunsan, insisted on the withdrawal of the public subscription for the proposed Nuclear Center through an announcement on April 28, showing signs of group resistance much like “Buan’s Situation.”

Ki-Jeong Ko koh@donga.com