Energy and Climate Policy Institute

작성일 : 12-07-04 09:56
Enerzine No 22. The nuclear cartel’s counter attack has begun
 글쓴이 : 에정센…
조회 : 7,125 No. 22.pdf [2045]
1. Issues
The nuclear cartel’s counter attack has begun.

Despite the anti-nuclear(phase out nuclear) camp’s dominance nervously continuing in Japan where its people welcomed the zero nuclear day in 42 years just recently, the Japanese government and Kansai Electric Power announced the nuclear power plant (NPP) restart. This shows that when a society becomes dependent on nuclear energy, phase out nuclear or energy conversion becomes difficult. The parallel situation in Japan’s neighboring country, Korea, is hopeless. The power failure of Gori Nuclear Power Reactor 1, which occurred in February 2012, was belatedly revealed and became a controversy, and the debate about nuclear-power development has not ceased.

On May 21, 2012, the anti nuclear group released the accident simulation results of Gori Nuclear Power Reactor 1 and Yeonggwang Nuclear Power Reactor 1. The summary includes a total of 850,000 deaths from cancer and casualties, a KRW628 trillion evacuation cost, and astronomical decontamination and rectification cost figures. Perhaps such results are inevitable in Korea, where the nuclear power plant density is the highest in the world.

Meanwhile, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Corporation (KHNP) requested the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to conduct a safety inspection to allay the concerns of the local residents near Wolsong Unit 1 and Gori Unit 1, and to obtain safety verification for each unit. The inspection was conducted from the end of May to the beginning of June. Wolsong Unit 1 will end its operation in the coming November. Gori Unit 1 should have ended its operation in 2008 but extended it, and it became problematic with the recent power failure. Environmental organizations and anti-nuclear groups criticized IAEA’s safety inspection, claiming that it was merely a pretext and a ploy to hide the people’s distrust of KHNP and IAEA and to extend the aging nuclear power plants’ operation. They claimed that IAEA has been contributing to the expansion of NPPs rather than promoting the plants’ safety, and that as IAEA has already intervened in the expansion of the domestic NPPs, it was difficult to trust it. IAEA diagnosed a medium-low-level radioactive-waste disposal facility in Gyeongju as safe and approved the continued operation of Gori Unit 1. The construction of the Gyeongju facility, however, was halted after the confirmation of the safety issues at the construction sites. Moreover, the accidents and breakdowns that occur in Gori Unit 1 account for 20% of the accidents and breakdowns that occur in all the domestic NPPs, and the recent power failure was just one of many.

On May 4, 2012, the day before Japan’s Zero NPP Day, the groundbreaking ceremony for Sin-Uljin NPP’s Reactor 1 and 2 was held in Korea, and the President graced the occasion. The energy ministers of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) are planning to release a statement citing the necessity of nuclear power. As such, phase out nuclear will be a distant reality unless a struggle surpassing the hegemony of the nuclear cartel takes place in Asia.
Written by Jung-pil, Lee (Researcher:

2. Opinion


 The public opinion that international conferences are useless could not be more accurate with the results of the Rio+20. As we initially expected, Rio+20 ended up as a huge disappointment. Through its final declaration titled, “The Future We Want,” the governments around the world agreed on the reconfirmation of the RIO Declaration, acceptance of the concept of the green economy, discussion among SDGs, and the consolidation of the UNEP status. However, these are not the goals we wanted. With this level of agreement, we are far from reaching valid solutions for global poverty, climate change, and gender equality. When we look into the continuing diplomatic rhetoric, we wonder whether they put any real importance on problems concerning social injustice. If they recognized the seriousness of the matter, they should have instituted special measures. However, the only institutional means is reinforcing international organizations, which, by the way, have essentially lost their abilities to operate and whose declining values indicate that the whole endeavor is no better than a huge failure.   

To find real solutions to serious global problems, we need detailed and radical goals and the financial resources and the means to execute these goals. Nothing, however, has been decided at Rio+20. Maybe they planned to specify the issues in future working level meetings but the unheard-of crises we are facing now do not comply with our time. Moreover, while governments shift the responsibility to one another at the follow-up meetings, the lives of people in Third World countries continue to be threatened by the actions of advanced countries, and our planet still remains on the path to destruction.   

We are running out of time. We can no longer depend on international conferences, where participants busy themselves in showing off their vulgar intentions. We propose that all NGOs in the world should boycott the said conference held only to satiate the greed of its participants. What we truly need is reform from below.
Written by Jin-woo, Lee (Researcher:

3. New Report “Green Jobs in Korea: Potentials and Prospects”

Energy and Climate Policy Institute (ECPI) wrote a report titled “Green Jobs in Korea: Potentials and Prospects” with support from the Korean office of Friedrich-Evert Foundation (FEF). It has the characteristics of “Green Jobs in Asia: Potentials and Prospects,” the report written and presented in Singapore in March this year. The report was written following the analytics tool provided by FEF; thus, it can conduct a global comparison according to the green-job status of each country in Asia. FEF plans to publish a book about the green jobs in Asia, including Korea. The report criticizes the Korean government’s rosy outlook with regard to the creation of green jobs through its Green Growth Policy, because of the ever-present energy-intensive and wasteful industrial structure and policy. Moreover, to increase green jobs, it emphasized the importance of developing social and economic partnerships for a green economy through solidarity with unions and environmental movements. The report can be downloaded from the link below.

Written by Jae-kak, Han (Deputy Director:


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