ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
Halting nuclear plant unconstitutional: Taiwan premier
Publication Date : 16-03-2013
Taiwan Premier Jiang Yi-huah said yesterday that it is unconstitutional for the Executive Yuan to announce ceasing the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant without seeking agreement from Legislative Yuan first.
According to local reports, Chiang's speech at a recent Yuan Sitting noting that any possible decisions on ceasing the construction of Nuke 4 would require further discussion by Executive Yuan members has triggered questions about whether the Executive Yuan looks set to make an announcement to stop constructing Nuke 4.
“The Executive Yuan can not directly announce a cessation of Nuke 4's construction as it will completely mix up the boundary between execution and legislation,” said Chiang.
Chiang emphasised that the Cabinet will not consider violating law to stop the construction of Nuke 4.
According to Chiang, when the then-ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) ceased construction of Nuke 4 in 2000, the Judicial Yuan Interpretation stated that it is unconstitutional and the construction was resumed after four moths.
At the time, the Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 520 sated that the Executive Yuan cannot stop construction of Nuke 4 without first getting approval from the Legislative Yuan.
To do otherwise would violate the separation of executive, legislative and judicial powers.
Chiang said the Executive Yuan can only inspect and supervise with thorough care the safety of nuclear power.
“If Nuke 4 receives approval from the Atomic Energy Council,” Chiang said, “then the government will advocate continuing building.”
“However, if the public has different opinions, the government will let the result of the referendum decide,” said Chiang.
Renewable energy rising
Chiang said yesterday that the government aims to increase renewable energy usage to over 9 per cent in 10 years.
According to Chiang, if Taiwan became a non-nuclear country now, it would dramatically decrease the time available to develop stable, safe and renewable energy and increase business owners' anxiety about the reliability of the power supply and energy price fluctuations.
“However, even if renewable energy covers 9 per cent of the nation's power usage within 10 years,” Chiang said, “It can still not make up the 18 per cent of power the current three nuclear power plants, set to be retired in 2025, provide.”
Nuke 4 Could Be Stopped with Legislative Yuan Approval: Su
DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang said yesterday that with approval from the Legislative Yuan it is not unconstitutional to stop building Nuke 4 according to the Judicial Yuan Interpretation. President Ma said recently that Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 520 already stated that it is unconstitutional to cease the construction of Nuke 4.
Su, however, said that the same Judicial Yuan Interpretation also stated that as long as the Executive Yuan proposes to stop the Nuke 4 construction and the Legislative Yuan agrees, the Nuke 4 construction can be halted without violating Constitutional Law.