Nukewatch Quarterly Fall 2016
Thousands of protestors took to the streets and social media August 6 and 7 in Lianyungang, China, opposing plans for building a $15 billion MOX (mixed oxide) spent nuclear fuel reprocessing facility in Jiangsu Province. The demonstration is part of a larger movement to oppose the Chinese government’s plans to expand the country’s nuclear power and processing capacity. Chinese activists have already succeeded in halting plans for a fuel fabrication facility, as well as opposing proposals for new nuclear power stations.
The Lianyungang protests broke out after rumors spread that China National Nuclear Corporation, in cooperation with French nuclear giant Areva, had chosen the area for a reprocessing facility they plan to begin constructing in 2020. The company’s website indicated its managers had visited Lianyungang to “study the proposed site,” which was one of six under consideration, and had not yet made a decision. The city is just 20 miles southwest of two operating reactors at the Tianwan nuclear facility, where plans are underway to build up to four new reactors. Giving voice to their opposition to the reprocessing plans, demonstrators chanted “no nuclear fuel recycling project” and “oppose nuclear waste, defend our home.”
—New York Times, Aug. 8; Energy Collective, Aug. 15, 2016