Greenpeace calls on Indonesian president to abandon nuke plans

Feature story - May 9, 2006
There is a need for the Indonesian government to reflect on what happened in Chernobyl, before deciding to continue with its plans to build nuclear power plants in Indonesia.

The impacts of Chernobyl and other nuclear disasters are featured in a new photography exhibition also launched by Greenpeace today at the Galeri Antara in Jakarta, which will run from May 9 to May 14.

Nur Hidayati, Energy Campaigner of Greenpeace Southeast Asia, called on President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to abandon plans to build nuclear power plants in Java and Madura in the light of the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe.

Greenpeace today called on President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to abandon plans to build nuclear power plants in Java and Madura in the light of the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe which resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths as well as long-term health, socio-economic and environmental impacts.

"The Chernobyl disaster serves as a grim reminder of the terrifying hazards associated with nuclear power. The government must not expose the Indonesian people to such dreadful risks and must stop plans to build nuclear power plants in our country. Instead, the government should aggressively pursue efforts in improving energy efficiency and developing clean renewable energy alternatives such as solar, biomass and wind power," said Nur Hidayati, Energy Campaigner of Greenpeace Southeast Asia.

Approximately 270,000 cancers and 93,000 fatal cancer cases will be caused by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster (1), according to a new report released by Greenpeace to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. In addition, the report looks into the ongoing health impacts of Chernobyl and concludes that radiation from the disaster has had a devastating effect on survivors; damaging immune and endocrine systems, leading to accelerated ageing, cardiovascular and blood illnesses, psychological illnesses, chromosomal aberrations and an increase in fetal deformations.

Greenpeace also launched a petition at its website (www.greenpeace.or.id) where citizens of Indonesia and people around the world can voice their opposition to nuclear energy, and lend their support towards the development of renewable energy technologies which are not only clean but can also be developed faster and cheaper than nuclear power.

In this petition, Greenpeace warned that the dirty track record of the nuclear industry has not stopped its proponents and supporters from re-branding nuclear power as a cheap and safe source of electricity. Riding on the crest of the climate change issue, the nuclear lobby is currently engaged in a systematic public relations effort to project nuclear power as the solution to the climate crisis, thereby obstructing the implementation of real solutions to climate change, namely renewable energy and energy efficiency.

"Governments around the world, including the Indonesian government, should not fall into the trap being laid out by the nuclear industry lobby. Contrary to industry propaganda, nuclear power is neither safe nor secure. No solution has ever been found to the problem of radioactive waste and the proliferation of nuclear facilities is contributing to growing insecurity worldwide," " said Von Hernandez, Campaign Director of Greenpeace Southeast Asia.

The impacts of Chernobyl and other nuclear disasters are featured in a new photography exhibition also launched by Greenpeace today at the Galeri Antara in Jakarta, which will run from May 9 to May 14. The exhibition features poignant portraits of individuals and families, and the stories of their life's struggle because of Chernobyl and other nuclear disasters.

      

"Anyone who has doubts about the dangers of nuclear power should visit the exhibition and see for themselves the reasons why we must oppose nuclear power. The threat of a new Chernobyl lies within every nuclear power plant. The world cannot afford another Chernobyl" concluded Nur Hidayati.

Greenpeace is an independent, campaigning organisation which uses non-violent, creative confrontation to expose global environmental problems, and to force solutions essential to a green and peaceful future.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Nur Hidayati, Climate & Energy Campaigner, Greenpeace Southeast Asia

Nabiha Shahab, Communications Officer, +62 8131 421 3432

The Chernobyl Catastrophe Consequences on Human Health report can be downloaded from www.greenpeace.org/chernobylhealthconsequncesreport

Take action!

Prevent the nuclear threat in Indonesia! Support Renewable Energy instead!

Support us!

Our vision of a better future is only as strong as the people who support us. Join Greenpeace today and add your voice to the movement that's committed to defending our planet. Your support will make all the difference.

Tags