10 achievements of South Korean anti-nuclear movement after Fukushima disaster
After Fukushima disaster, human being became confident that ‘nuclear energy’ must not be an option we choose. Since the disaster, there have been very strong and various anti-nuclear activities in Korean civil society. On the 2nd anniversary of Fukushima, We, Green Party of Korea lists 10 main achievements of those activities accomplished during the past 2 years as follows.
1. Political forces advocating nuclear-free world came into existence – launching of Green Party of Korea and forming of MP groups representing anti-nuclear.
Green Party of Korea launched on 4th March 2012, which was driven by the aspiration of South Korean civil society for nuclear-free world. In parliament, 2 MP groups advocated for anti-nuclear lawmaking and watching government’s nuclear policy.
2. Nuclear-free declaration from many municipalities
Since Park wonsoon, Mayor of Seoul announced his nuclear reducing policy on the date of 26th April 2012, total of 46 municipalities in South Korea joined the ‘nuclear-free and energy change city’ declaration.
3. A proposal of ‘The basic law for nuclear-free and energy change’ and nuclear-free scenarios
‘The basic law for nuclear-free and energy change’, one of the 2012 general election pledges of Green Party of Korea, will be proposed soon at national assembly of South Korea by MP Han Myoungsook, a member of nuclear-free MP group. Also, civil society of Korea provided various nuclear-free scenarios confronting governmental energy policy promoting nuclear power generation.
4. Opening the ‘no-nuke school’ and launching the ‘no-nuke news’
18th June 2012, ‘no-nuke school’ opened with 16 courses of lectures and workshops. This school has been educating citizens who will be active in anti-nuclear movement of South Korea. Also, 6th June 2012, monthly ‘no-nuke news’ was launched. This newspaper confronts against government’s nuclear policy and reports the voices of fighting spots.
5. Founding the ‘citizen radioactivity watch center’ by civil society
April of 2013, the ‘citizen radio-activity watch center’ will be launched. This center will operate a radioactivity monitoring system funded by a citizen fundraising campaign.
6. Expansion of anti-nuclear movement among various civic groups
After Fukushima, anti-nuclear movement has rapidly expanded in civil society of Korea. It includes various cooperatives, NGOs, religious groups, academia and parents groups. The ‘Common action for nuclear-free world’, an NGO alliance for anti-nuclear action, encompasses around 80 member organizations.
7. Anti-nuclear Movements in the regions of nuclear power plants
In Samcheok and Youngduk which government designated as places for the construction of new nuclear power plants, a lot of civil anti-nuclear campaigns are underway. Also in the regions which have old nuclear power plants including Busan, Gyoungjoo and Ulsan, various activities for closing the overaged nuclear power plants has been underway.
8. Anti-transmission tower actions and the ‘Hope-Bus’
In Milyang and Cheongdo, agricultural areas over which 765kV transmission towers are planned to constructed, strong anti-transmission tower protests led by elderly people are underway. Urban supporters for those local actions have been continuously getting on the ‘Hope-bus’, a shuttle bus toward nuclear sites, to visit the fighting spots and support local residents’ action.
9. Launching the ‘nuclear safety committee’ by government, however…
After Fukushima disaster, the government of Korea constituted the law of nuclear safety and established the ‘nuclear safety committee’ on July 2012. However, as shown in the series of accidents in nuclear power plants during the past 2 years, the committee has just shown its incapability in procuring nuclear safety. All the more, Park administration is trying to transfer this committee from being under the President to under the Future ministry, which will harm the independency of the committee and even more promote the government’s pro-nuclear energy policy.
10. Memorialization Events of Fukushima in 2013
9th March 2013, anti-nuclear movement groups of Korea held anti-nuclear events in Seoul, Busan and Gyoungjoo for the 2nd anniversary of Fukushima. All the citizens who gathered in those events are the most important achievement of Korea’s anti-nuclear movement.
The lesson of Fukushima is widely spreading in Korean society. We believe the grassroots action and aspiration for nuclear-free world will be realized in the near future. Green Party of Korea will continue to struggle together with all the citizens until the day of every nuclear power plant disappears.
03/11/2013 – 08:43