DOE: Nat’l consensus needed to reopen Bataan Nuclear Power Plant

The Department of Energy (DOE) said the government needs to get the people’s approval before the controversial Bataan Nuclear Power Plant could be opened.

“So with the directives of the Secretary [Alfonso Cusi], there is no clear direction on reopening the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant. It has to be subjected or submitted to national consensus,” DOE Undersecretary Donato Marcos told congressmen during the agency’s budget hearing on Monday, September 5.

Marcos said this was the agreement among the member-countries of the International Atomic Energy Agency at the International Framework for Nuclear Energy Cooperation Conference, which the Philippines hosted from August 30 to September 1 at the Diamond Hotel in Manila City.

“Second, that’s why we invited so many stakeholders for this program is for social awareness, to really [determine] if there is social acceptability when it comes to nuclear [power]. And third is coming up with an output that may serve as indicator or somewhat information [on] what the nation really feels about the nuclear power plant,” said Marcos.

He did not specify, however, how the DOE plans to go about getting a national consensus on the contested Bataan Nuclear Power Plant.

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