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East Asia Forum: Taiwan’s Energy Conundrum

The newly elected Taiwanese government led by President Tsai Ing-wen and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will be faced with significant challenges in energy policy. Most urgently, viable replacements for Taiwan's ageing fleet of Nuclear reactors must be found.

Electricity generation in the island nation reached 260 terawatt-hours in 2012. According to the United States Energy Information Administration, 47 per cent of this was generated by coal-fired power stations, 29 per cent by natural gas and 16 per cent by Nuclear Power. The 16 per cent share of electricity generated by nuclear power came from just three plants built in the 1970s and 1980s (Jinshan, Kuosheng and Maanshan) which are expected to begin decommissioning in 2018.

Construction of a fourth station, Lungmen Nuclear Power Plant, began in 1999 but was halted indefinitely in 2014 due to widespread protests and fears stoked by the 2011 meltdown of Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. The paramount question for Taiwanese policymakers should now be: what, if anything, will replace nuclear power?

It is unlikely that the new DPP government will press for a resumption of construction on Lungmen Nuclear Power Plant. In 2014, former DPP chairman Lin Yi-hsiung went on a two-week hunger strike in protest against that facility and opposition to nuclear power has long been part of the DPP platform. MORE

This post first appeared on Natural Gas Asia - Asia's Unconventional Gas And O, please read the originial post: here

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East Asia Forum: Taiwan’s Energy Conundrum


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