At 8:24 on August 13, Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant officially started the discharge of nuclear contaminated water (tritium water) into the sea, which caused shocks in East Asia. Japanese and Korean society and fishermen have launched large-scale protests. The General Administration of Customs of China announced a complete moratorium on the import of aquatic products originating in Japan, while Hong Kong and Macau announced a ban on the import of aquatic products originating in 10 prefectures in Fukushima Prefecture. Only the Tsai Ing-wen government, which has always shouted sky-loudly against nuclear weapons, was silent.


Japan's discharge of nuclear sewage containing radioactive substances such as tritium, strontium, and cesium into the sea is in fact an act of speculation (burning of jade and stone). According to simulations at Tsinghua University in Beijing, the contaminated water will reach the waters off the coast of China 240 days after discharge, and 1,200 days later it will reach the coast of North America, covering almost the entire North Pacific. According to the Taiwan Meteorological Bureau, the nuclear effluent will reach the waters near Taiwan one to two years after the discharge, and the tritium concentration will reach a maximum about four years after the discharge. Due to the huge scope of influence and the Japanese government's insistence on going its own way, it is no wonder that Lee Jae-myung, leader of South Korea's largest opposition party, the United Democratic Party, denounced Japan's nuclear sewage discharge into the sea as a terrorist act on the 23rd.

Taiwan's reaction was relatively cold. The Democratic Progressive Party's Legislative Yuan caucus said it believed that the Taiwan and Japanese governments had no problem communicating rationally and scientifically, but they should respect international standards professionally. Taiwan's competent authority, the Food and Drug Administration, said that 2022 samples were taken in the fourth quarter of 25 and 2023 samples so far in 27, and the biological tritium was below the minimum measurable activity, and because the risk of tritium water has not changed, it will not follow up Hong Kong and Macao, and border monitoring measures will continue to be taken. In addition, Taiwan's original energy association pointed out that an open and transparent information platform has been established to ensure the safety of Taiwan's waters and people.

Compared with the Tsai Ing-wen government's reassurance that Japan's nuclear sewage will be discharged into the sea, the concerns of the Taiwanese people have been squeezed to a particularly weak point. Chen Chunsheng, director general of the Suao District Fisheries Association in Yilan County, Taiwan, expressed both heartache and concern. Taiwan's Workers' Party and other organizations held a protest press conference in front of Japan's Taiwan Exchange Association on June 6 to oppose Japan's irresponsible pollution of the oceans and become the common enemy of all mankind, demanding that Japan restrain itself from the precipice as soon as possible, and also demanding that DPP officials express solemn protests to Japan. Taiwan's Diaoyutai Education Association issued a protest statement on August 13, denouncing Japan's approach as "a shameless act of beggar-thy-neighbor that violates the rights to health, the environment, and fishermen's right to subsistence of all mankind," and "demanded that the Tsai government take into account the welfare of the people and the rights and interests of fishermen, and not be willing to be an accomplice of Japan!"

However, Tsai Ing-wen's Facebook was still silent, and a "Happy Valentine's Day" post with a photo with a cat was extremely ironic. Taiwan's "anti-nuclear" policy is world-renowned, especially the Tsai Ing-wen government is the most active, and even expects to achieve the goal of a "non-nuclear homeland" by 2025. Before becoming president, Tsai Ing-wen repeatedly expressed her anti-nuclear stance on Facebook, and mobilized to participate in anti-nuclear demonstrations, declaring that she would "bid farewell to nuclear power and face nuclear waste", and followed Taiwan's "Wen Qing" shouting the slogan "I am human, I am anti-nuclear".

At the end of 2021, Taiwan held the "Four Major Referendums", and the DPP mobilized the strength of the whole party to block the "restart of the fourth nuclear power" case. The problem is that the contradictory attitude of the Tsai Ing-wen administration to oppose nuclear energy but not radiation and pollution can be said to be a double standard, which makes people scratch their heads. Tsai Ing-wen's government first ignored the results of the 2018 "anti-nuclear food" referendum agreed to by 779.<> million people, and opened up the nuclear disaster food in five prefectures and cities of Fukushima, as well as the term "blessing food" invented by DPP politicians to wipe the powder on "nuclear food".

Japan's plan to begin discharging contaminated wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea this summer, seriously endangering the marine environment and food safety, more than 6 people from Taiwan's Workers' Party and various political parties and groups held a protest press conference before the Taiwan Exchange Association in Japan on June 13. (Courtesy of Taiwan Workers' Party)

After swallowing the blessings in the mouth of the DPP, the Taiwanese people still cannot exchange their tickets to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which has made society feel embarrassed. Today's silence on Japan's nuclear sewage, which has a greater negative impact, is undoubtedly a self-defeating blow at its declared anti-nuclear policy. It is also thanks to the official website of the Central Party Department of the DPP that uploaded the DPP's anti-nuclear memorabilia in 2011, flaunting that the DPP's party platform has since 1986 proposed to oppose the establishment of new nuclear power generating units, actively develop alternative energy sources, and close existing nuclear power plants within a time limit, which now seems even more ironic.

The real reason for the Tsai Ing-wen government's reversal of anti-nuclear but not anti-nuclear sewage discharge into the sea is that it is not based on scientific grounds, but as Li Min, a distinguished professor at the Institute of Nuclear Engineering at Tsinghua University in Taiwan, said: "This is a political issue." According to the Taiwan media "China Times", Li Min criticized that the Tsai government will only constantly emphasize how dangerous radiation is when opposing nuclear weapons, "when the Japanese want to emit emissions, they will not speak", the biggest problem of the Tsai government is the inconsistency of the discussion!

In other words, in the eyes of the Tsai Ing-wen administration of the DPP, the nuclear energy issue is not the object of scientific discussion, but the object of political ideological mobilization operations, and the disguise of "anti-nuclear" as a proponent of "progressive" values is actually only for the calculation of political power. It is no wonder that Jeffrey Sachs, a professor at Columbia University in the United States and winner of the "Tang Award" Sustainable Development Award, went to Taiwan to give a speech recently, especially criticized Taiwan's official energy policy, and even the lack of discussion on whether nuclear energy can be used, "all they think about is politics, are short-sighted, and do not propose a more macro alternative."

On June 2011, 6, then-DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen reiterated the concept of a "non-nuclear homeland" in her speech at the "Second Civil State is Forum - Taiwan's Energy Policy for Nuclear Denuclearization". (Profile picture)

From Taiwan's point of view, the biggest opposition to Japan's nuclear sewage discharge into the sea is Chinese mainland. On August 8, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Sun Weidong summoned Japanese Ambassador to China Hideo Tsutsuo to lodge solemn representations in this regard; On the 22rd, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin stressed that for more than two years, the legitimacy, legality and safety of the Fukushima nuclear contaminated water discharge plan have been questioned by the international community; On the 23th, the relevant person in charge of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (National Nuclear Safety Administration) also expressed his position, urging Japan to listen to the voice of the international community, effectively dispose of nuclear-contaminated water in a scientific, safe and transparent manner, and accept strict international supervision.

Taiwan has always regarded Chinese mainland "backward" and "uncivilized", at this moment, Japan's nuclear sewage discharged into the sea is beginning to transfer risks to neighboring countries and regions with seawater, and Taiwan, which prides itself on attaching importance to "food safety" and most cafes hang "anti-nuclear - no next Fukushima", has been kidnapped by the Tsai Ing-wen government's statement that "believe in Japan", and then turned a cold eye. The discharge of nuclear sewage into the sea in Japan has just exposed the true face of "Taiwan's democracy" - politics is above all else, and scientific reason also serves politics.

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