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Senators open to BNPP reopening

MORONG, Bataan – Members of the Senate Committee on Energy yesterday said they are open to proposals for the reopening of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant here.

This was after former Rep. Mark Cojuangco briefed senators and members of the media on how electricity price would significantly reduce by 50 percent if the BNPP becomes fully operational.

Cojuangco, a strong advocate of nuclear power, insisted solar and renewable energy, apart from coal-fired power plants, cannot sustain the country’s electricity demands alone.

Compared to coal, RE, and solar, nuclear power plants are environment-friendly, sustainable, and less risky, he said.

Citing studies from the World Health Organization, the former lawmaker said nuclear power is safe and can save lives, allaying fears of a possible tragedy like what occurred at Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, and Fukushi-ma.

“What is important is we have a cheaper and safer source of electricity. Why settle for a P10 per retail, when we can have it at P5?” Cojuangco said during the meeting.

He also said the BNPP is situated 19 meters above sea level and won’t be affected in case of a tsunami. The facility can also withstand a strong earthquake as it is designed for a seismic acceleration of 0.4 G.

“I cannot say that before, but after what happened to Fukushi-ma, I am now convinced nothing would happen to it even if an Intensity 9 earthquake strikes,” Cojuangco said. (Hannah L. Torregoza)