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Taipower working towards decommissioning of Chinshan Nuclear plant

The state-run Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) should draft a plan by 2015 for the decommission of the first reactor at the Chinshan Nuclear Power Plant, which is the oldest nuclear power plant in the country, a senior official at the Cabinet-level Atomic Energy Council said Monday.

The operator of Taiwan’s three running nuclear power plants has to come up with the plan by Dec. 5, 2015 to show the authorities how the reactor will be shut down permanently and safely in 2018 as scheduled, said Chiu Tzu-tsung, head of the Radiation Monitoring Center under the council, at a Legislative Yuan budget-screening session.

Taipower must detail the costs and manpower it will need for the task, and how it will dispose of the aged reactor, which has been running commercially since Dec. 6, 1978, he said.

If the company fails to submit the plan before the deadline, it will face a fine ranging from NT$500,000 (US$17,187) to NT$2.5 million and be given another deadline, Chiu said.

Fines will continue to be handed out every time the company fails to honor the deadline, according to Chiu.

By making the company hand over a plan three years before the reactor is to be shut down, the authorities will have time to review the project, he said, noting that once the reactor is shut down, it should be dismantled within 25 years.

The power plant, located in Shimen District of New Taipei in northern Taiwan, has two reactors. Its second one, which started running commercially in 1979, is scheduled to be decommissioned in 2019.

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