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Nuclear phase-out (I): How did it start?

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By Chang Se-moon

The nuclear power phase-out in this article means President Moon's policy of ending the use of nuclear power plants as a source of electricity generation in Korea. Hopefully, I will be presenting an objective review of the policy, while making a positive recommendation for the future direction of nuclear power in Korea.

When did the phase-out policy begin?

In June 2017, only a month after taking office, President Moon announced that he would "review policy on nuclear power plants entirely," and that Korea would "abandon a development policy centered on nuclear power plants and exit the era of nuclear energy."

He also stated that plans for new reactors would be cancelled and the operating periods of existing units would not be extended beyond their design lifetimes.

In July 2017, the Moon administration announced its plan to stop construction of the Shin Kori units 5 and 6. Approximately, 40 percent of their construction had been completed at the time of the announcement. The suspension of construction incurred losses amounting to no less than $120 million to their builders.

Following an October 2017 survey in which 60 percent of citizens favored a resumption of construction of units 5 and 6 ― while 40 percent opposed ― the Moon administration announced in December 2017 that construction of........

© The Korea Times