Is PAP, for, or against Nuclear power?

Posted: March 14, 2011 by fievel in Labels: ,

I'm back to the blogosphere.

I'm back because the Japan earthquake prodded me to think of bringing up a topic for bargaining between the ruling party and the people of Singapore before the upcoming election.
I thought of writing in to the Straits Times, but I suspect my letter won't be the lucky one that gets published.

I believe a question needs to be answered by PAP, if not by PM Lee Hsien Loong himself, then at least some other shining star in the parliament.

Question: Is PAP, for, or against Nuclear power?

Because I know many of us are against it. And I know there will be a large group of Singaporeans who will want to know PAP's stand, whether it is a definitive yes or no, or a non-committal yes/no; Even if PM Lee maintains that it is but 'an option for us to study', I believe that alone is enough of a statement to swing my vote. What about you?

I refer to PM Lee's announcement a couple of months ago...on Asiaone.

IT MAY be a long time before any decision is taken on nuclear energy but Singapore should ready itself to do so, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday.
He said that preparations would give the country the ability to exercise such an option should this become necessary and feasible one day.
Mr Lee was delivering the Singapore Energy Lecture for the first time at the Suntec Ballroom where he referred to nuclear energy as an "important part of the solution to mankind's energy problems".
The lecture was held as part of the annual Singapore International Energy Week.
He was speaking to an audience of about 800 people made up of businessmen, industry experts and government officials.
Mr Lee said that several countries in South-east Asia have expressed their intention to build nuclear power plants - a challenge which will be faced even more by developing countries than developed ones.
For Singapore, he raised concerns such as safety due to the country's small size, which stretches about 40km from east to west.
He said: "It's very difficult to put it (a nuclear power plant) very far from population because nobody in Singapore is far from population.
"Yet we cannot afford to dismiss the option of nuclear energy altogether."
As part of building up its capabilities, Singapore should keep up with new developments and learn from the experiences of other countries.
The country should also get in touch with experts in the field of nuclear energy and train a few of its own experts in the field.
He added: "Then we can critically assess developments in nuclear technology and decide on the feasibility of nuclear-power deployment one day in the future."
When he called for questions from the floor, Mr Lee was asked if it would happen during his time in office.
He replied: "I would say possibly during my lifetime."
Earlier on, he said that Singapore, which he referred to as "an alternative energy-disadvantaged country", is readying itself for a future world which will be fossil fuel-constrained and carbon- constrained.
He said that the country would have to put a price on carbon if a global agreement to curb carbon emissions is reached.
This additional charge - which all businesses and consumers must pay - will reflect the social costs of carbon emissions and is needed to induce consumers to change their behaviour.
Mr Lee did not specify whether it would come in the form of a carbon tax or cap-and-trade scheme.


  1. Welcome back!

    I would be strongly against a nuclear power plant. This is independent of the safety levels of modern nuclear fission plants. Why? No fission plant is 100% safe, which by itself is fine. Unfortunately, the worst-case failure scenario of a nuclear plant would make Singapore unlivable. I believe the risks overwhelmingly outweigh the benefits. Losing our entire home with no other place to go to is an unacceptable risk.

    Personally, I would say to wait for Fusion reactor technology to be ready. And if we want it faster, we ought to contribute our fair share to the ITER project. It would also introduce a new relevant (and exciting) field in Science that Singaporeans could find new jobs in.

  1. Fievel says:

    Hey dude, good to hear from you!
    Though Fusion Reactor Technology and all that...just added to my to-read-up list.

  1. Good to hear from you too! By the way, there's a very interesting discussion along the same lines as your post on the New Asia Republic. Learned something new about Uranium-Nitrate reactors. Looks very promising. I left some comments there.