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OECD experts in Taiwan to conduct stress tests on nuclear plants

2013/03/04 20:45:42

Taipei, March 4 (CNA) A six-man team from the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA), an agency under the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, began on Monday a two-week peer review of the three nuclear power plants currently operating in Taiwan.

The Cabinet-level Atomic Energy Agency (AEC), which oversees the plants' operator Taiwan Power Company (Taipower), said European Union members have conducted stress tests on their nuclear power plants since the meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in March 2011.

The review will conduct stress tests on Taiwan's three operating nuclear power plants to determine the possible consequences of extreme events, such as earthquakes and flooding, on the facilities' safety systems.

During their stay in Taiwan, the experts will meet with AEC and Taiwpower technicians and review written records of the three plants -- two of which are in New Taipei in northern Taiwan and the other in Pingtung County in southern Taiwan.

Due to the team's limited time in Taiwan, it will only visit Taiwan's Second Nuclear Power Plant in Wanli, New Taipei.

The team is scheduled to present the results of its initial review on March 15, and the AEC will make it public. The official English-language report will be sent in one month.

The AEC said it will invite EU experts to Taiwan in September to conduct a safety assessment of the controversial Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, which is still under construction and facing heavy opposition.

Premier Jiang Yi-huah has said that the government will hold a referendum to decide the fate of the plant.

(By Lin Meng-ju and Lilian Wu)