[In the news] Almendras: No more nuclear future for Bataan plant – PhilStar.com

Almendras: No more nuclear future for Bataan plant
By Ding Cervantes, The Philippine Star
January 19, 2012

 CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga, Philippines – The idle Bataan nuclear power plant (BNPP) definitely no longer has any nuclear future and might have to be totally abandoned for other purposes, Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras said here.

“A coal-fired power plant is being considered, but the conversion cost seems too high so it might be better to consider a new plant,” Almendras said at a press conference during an “energy forum” held here Tuesday by the Department of Energy.

Almendras, however, said the government has not closed its doors to new nuclear technology developments that would take into consideration the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan as a result of the devastating tsunani triggered by a powerful quake in northeast Japan in March last year.

“Maybe in five to seven years from now, that new technology would be available and these are plants that can withstand risks,” he said, citing proposals to construct smaller nuclear plants producing lesser power.

Almendras also noted previous studies showing that the BNPP is not on an ideal site.”

He was referring to findings that the plant, whose construction started in 1976 during the Marcos administration, was located on an earthquake fault zone and too near Mt. Pinatubo whose eruption in 1991 was said to be one of the most powerful in recent history.

Read full article @ www.philstar.com

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