Activist urges opposition to 20MW nuclear reactor on Nakhon Nayok riverbank

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Srisuwan Janya, a renowned political activist, called upon the inhabitants of Nakhon Nayok to vehemently oppose the construction of a 20-megawatt nuclear reactor strategically positioned on the Nakhon Nayok River bank. This call to action comes ahead of the project’s third public hearing, slated for today.

Tracing back to the project’s inception in 1990, Srisuwan narrated how the government initially proposed a 10-megawatt nuclear reactor in the Ongkharak district of Nakhon Nayok. However, due to corruption allegations and strong opposition from the locals, the project was stalled in 2010.

Fast forward to 2017, efforts were revived to breathe life back into the nuclear reactor project, only for it to enter a state of uncertainty once more. The project’s proponents have since organised several public hearings in a bid to resuscitate the initiative. Today’s meeting marks the third and final hearing.

According to Srisuwan, the primary hindrance to the project’s progress has been the residents’ fear of potential radioactive contamination of their water sources. These include the Bang Pakong River in the neighbouring Chachoengsao, and the Rangsit Canal in Pathum Thani, which links to the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok.

Srisuwan criticised the project’s feasibility study, conducted in 1990, for its outdated information. He pointed out that the study now contradicts the design principles set out by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The majority of the proposed site in the Nakhon Nayok blueprint lies on land intended for agriculture or residential use.

In addition to these concerns, Srisuwan alleged potential foul play, suggesting some residents may have been financially incentivised to support the nuclear reactor project. He drew parallels to the case of water recently discharged from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, which he claims has significantly tarnished Japan’s reputation globally.

Srisuwan also accused the Thai government of failing to provide the public with full disclosure regarding what will be the country’s largest nuclear reactor. With these allegations in mind, he urged the residents of Nakhon Nayok to show up in large numbers at today’s public hearing, reported Bangkok Post.

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Central Thailand News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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