19 May2009

If you read my post a few days ago on the re-commissioning of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant and are interested in that issue, you may want to circle back to the original post that has by now, attracted a lot of attention, not just from hits to that post, but in comments from a number of very interesting, and apparently rather influential and/or intelligent folks… the comment “debate” is fascinating and if you are inclined, worth reading. I am also pleased that folks who are opposed to this plant have also put in their views along with proponents of the bill in Congress. I would caution everyone that names sometimes aren’t what they purport to be, but in this particular case, I was careful to try and confirm that all email addresses of major commenters were at least cross-checked to verify that they are actual active email addresses. At any rate, regardless of the people who are named and the posts that they hold, the content of the discussion is worth reviewing and I leave readers to draw their own personal conclusions.

Meanwhile, the poll of whether readers thought the BNPP should be re-commissioned ended with about 75% solidly against it, at least for readers of this blog. I do hope congressmen will do what is in the best interests of their constituents and the country. The discussion brought up several comments regarding the perception readers have of the honesty or trustworthiness of congress as a whole. I am sure there are very honest and well-meaning congressmen and congresswomen out there. I just wish the perception and reality was that the VAST MAJORITY of our representatives fell into that category rather than possibly the other way around. I note that members of Greenpeace have left links to petitions asking folks to sign up if they are against the nuclear plant and you should go to the linked sites if interested. It never ceases to amaze me how a small post on a food blog can encourage such lively and interesting discussions in a totally unrelated topic… And to the few folks that resorted to crass expletives to express their current frame of mind, you realize by now that I can and do and will moderate and delete inappropriate comments.



  1. Apicio says:

    Excellent discussion of a touchy topic one could have easily missed in the normal progression of posts. Thanks for drawing our attention to it.

    May 19, 2009 | 1:34 am


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  3. Maria Clara says:

    I am supporting the development and use of nuclear plant as a source of electricity. Not only it is a sign that we are abreast of the 21st Century technology it is by all means an affordable source of electricity to all consumers. BUT the grassroots of our politics are imbedded and ingrained with corruption and bribery. We lacked absolute transparent governing bodies. No check and balance. With this kind of governing bodies we have, I do not only perceive but I firmly believe if we will rehabilitate and run the Bataan boondoggle plant the Philippines will be one of the sources in the international black market of processed uranium and plutonium for nuclear proliferation. Our politicians do not care about this. Our politicians just look at it as a source of a financial hub to line their pockets. Not only that, nuclear waste is not like horse or carabao waste it needs a long term maintenance for safekeeping free of leak and crack containers. One needs not to wait for that particular town where they store nuclear waste for residents developing cancer and females given birth to babies with horrible deformities and severe defects. The life cycle of nuclear waste is indefinite and the plants, vegetables, and animals raised in that contaminated town will contaminate and infect the entire country and the world by vacationing in Manila and eating produce that came from the contaminated town.

    May 19, 2009 | 3:00 am

  4. denise says:

    ow i totally missed the fun! just saw the LENGTHY comments…try to read later… i posted on my facebook that i wanted to smack the gentleman from pangasinan right upside the head…but now i want to whack my congressman (1st district of bataan) more for allowing the bill!!!

    Maria Clara…actually i think i read somewhere a long time ago that BNPP was made for some low grade radio-active chemical not plutonium or uranium (they cost more)

    May 19, 2009 | 7:32 am

  5. kim says:

    wow ! galing mo talaga MM … food enthusiast turned into politics ang blog mo ! that was a long argument from the congressman … my belief stands still, i don’t trust our gov’t ! their main purpose is to gain power, prestige & more PESO ! somebody dare blame us for having such opinions ? i competely opposed to him saying “we filipinos try to pull each other down” … our fil-am community works harder to clear out all the negativities that our gov’t has stomped on our country ! we help & support those who help themselves … not the suckers who take advantage ! other nationalities look down on us because of our country’s infamous reputation … but hey, that’s changing … yeah, he’s right … we’re changing world class, but WE have to work & prove that we’re worth something … i don’t see the gov’t has done that by far… i wish we could say “hear,see & speak no evil” but we’re not as dumb as the gov’t thinks we are … i could only hope our kababayans think wisely who to vote for next year … anyway, this plant is not a trial & error school project we’re dealing with … lives are at stake, what more is important than that ? hmmm, let me guess …

    May 19, 2009 | 7:39 am

  6. kakusina says:

    the number and quality of the posts only prove that ordinary people do care about the Philippines and are interested in “serious” issues. Kaya lang cynical and frustrated dahil halos zero na sa ethics at performance ang government officials dito. At my age (senior na) I have finally registered as a voter. hmm, boboto ba ako? abangan ang susunod na kabanata!

    May 19, 2009 | 8:56 am

  7. Jun b says:

    I rather use candle in my home which centuries ago my grand grand father use in their home rather than use nuclear power. If this happen I will probably migrate thousand miles away from bataan and bring a laptop power by a solar or wind turbine and still continue to write a comment at market manila and also shift my blog against nuclear power. At least I can still continue to enjoy life with all the natural food that mother earth provide us.

    May 19, 2009 | 9:09 am

  8. kakusina says:

    to maria clara:
    new doesn’t necessarily mean good. A nuclear power station is a costly and dirty/dangerous source of power. It costs $2 billion to build (three times more than a gas fueled power station of the same capacity) at almost $5 billion, repeat, $5 billion ang magagastos sa clean up! At sinabi mo na rin, may radioactive waste na maiiwan at wala pang way to dispose of this na safe at saka acceptable.

    May 19, 2009 | 9:26 am

  9. Mila says:

    Fantastic thread, and both sides do share a great deal of information that we should all know if we are to make the right decision. Many of us remember the fallout (literally and figuratively) of Chernobyl, those who grew up after the fact may now want to learn more about the mess and the aftereffects of that situation. I can’t vote on rebuilding/rehabilitating BNPP knowing that it may cause more potential harm for generations in the future, due to the lack of storage for waste products, not to mention the geological dimensions of its current context. I realize that we could (in hindsight) wish we had built it, and there’s a part of me that wishes we could tap into safe nuclear power to avoid further power problems. Wind power is being used in some parts of the country, but it also affects bird migration and we will have to see if the windmills are kept in any sort of working condition after 10 years. Solar seems like the most safe choice, it’s still expensive to use, but if they can spend a billion dollars patching up the BNPP, why can’t they find a way to fund more solar centers? Fund storage for solar power!
    As for what I think of our congress, I really don’t want to think negatively anymore today.
    MM, did you read the response of the DOF to the criticism of the book tax? It’s not just congress, it’s the entire system. Heartbreaking.

    May 19, 2009 | 9:58 am

  10. Nadine Galza says:

    Nuclear is not ‘high-tech’. It’s old school. It’s unsafe. No one knows what to do with the waste.

    Renewable energy is the present and the future. It is clean and cheaper in the long run.

    What the $%@*!%# are these congressmen trying to force such an illogical issue??? Money!!! Whose family is it buying into Meralco nowadays and who is the proponent of this bill?

    That solves the mystery.

    I just signed the petition against the Bataan plant. I hope you will all do the same.



    May 19, 2009 | 12:11 pm

  11. Gener says:

    Im against Nuclear Plants too “BUT” if you give me a choice between nuclear and coal, i still preffered the nuclear one! its cheap to run, cleaner to environment compare to fossil/coal. Technology now is very advance so possibility of leak may not be the issue. safety is promoted as in par of its technological features…In the middle east now where oil is the ultra-life, they are diverting their power source into nuclear one,(quote to bahrain,U.A.E and saudi arabia)its not because of nuclear detterence or arms race but they can forsee that their future cannot be dependent totally with oil, they have the alternatives too like the renewable energy sourse but they preffered the nuclear sourse of energy because its clean and less expensive to maintain…They never thought about chernovyl effect as they know that, its not a cold war anymore! all works guaranteed with its strict and best technology ever offered in the world! The only issue on this as i believed is,,Whose going to handle this job? how are we going to avoid “crocodiles from the authority who may handle this project? Corrupt? then it will not make any sense, it may put the safety in jeopardy….That is the big issue!!!

    May 19, 2009 | 4:24 pm

  12. anton says:

    I agree with nadeen… nuclear energy is a thing of the past… our gocernment should just invest the money neede to restore the plant in other forms of CLEANER, CHEAPER AND SAFER forms of enrgy like solar, wind or even geothermal?

    May 20, 2009 | 12:48 am

  13. anton says:

    hehehe! i mean government

    May 20, 2009 | 12:49 am

  14. mardie c",) says:

    i just signed the petition against the nuke online.

    May 20, 2009 | 4:15 am

  15. Fred Lopez says:

    Good JOB MM – now marketmanila.com is not just gastronomically significant, it’s environmentally and socially significant too. That is not to say that it wasn’t before, but its in a whole new class now.

    May 20, 2009 | 3:04 pm

  16. zerho says:

    Renewable energy like wind, qeothermal, hydroelectrical, is not enough to sustain energy consumption in the Philippines in the future. The Cheronobyl incident is a thing of the past and the current safegueards are enough to prevent that incident from happening. There are also international committees who handle and ensure the safety of nuclear plants. We have to face it that nuclear power is a possible solution to our energy problems. Other countries have taken the leap like Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia. As of now i have not heard any recent issues pertaining to contamination from nuclear radiation. Maybe the we could do it, maybe we are reaady to go nuclear. Many government officials may be corrupt but I believe that they are not that evil to not consider the lives of Filipinos…

    May 20, 2009 | 5:45 pm

  17. Fred Lopez says:

    Maybe in the future yes, but not too many people trust this administration can do it right (or trust it with the money to build it).

    May 20, 2009 | 6:25 pm

  18. Gener says:

    That is quite right, install all renewable energy sources in the country but it will never ever capable of sustaining the future! WIND power has already got some backlash,insufficient mechanical failures prompting this australian company to do US$300 million repair for their faulty products! well that costs much expensive!GEOTHERMAL-we already haves it but we know that they are quite insufficient despite that we are in the volcanic belt,maintenance is way expensive and risky its too labourous!HYDRO POWER-its still the best source of power and being used as irrigation as well “BUT” we have a lot of them now and there is a limmited place for us to install them and besides, they are damaging the eco-diversity of our country! safety?? not really sure of it too! what if it will burst? im sure that it will create catasthropy in its lower region..Some renewables are being introduced like the SEAWAVE but it is still on its trial and error promotion,, WHILE nuclear power source-we have the international community to assure the safety of this technology…we should think broader,,Greenpeace? they may concern a lot but they are not always right…Yet havent heard any nuclear plants leaked? maybe if they were savotaged…

    May 20, 2009 | 8:04 pm

  19. Fredo says:

    Sir, Nuclear Accidents are caused by equipment and human failure. Just google up “nuclear plants leaked”, and it wont be just 1 type of renewable energy that will power our future, it will be a combination of all of these safe and renewable sources.

    May 20, 2009 | 9:40 pm

  20. James says:

    Believing that nuclear accidents are a thing of the past is a good way to have accidents now.

    Even modern nuclear plants, which BNPP is most definitely NOT, are large, complex organisms with a life of their own. Treated with apathy or too much trust and they will fail.

    May 21, 2009 | 9:41 am

  21. toping says:

    The legacy of Chernobyl:


    Enough said.

    May 22, 2009 | 4:11 am

  22. toping says:

    Everyone, please click on the link above for a sobering photo essay on the devastating effects of a nuclear meltdown…

    May 22, 2009 | 4:18 am

  23. Gener says:

    I say once again,Chernovyl effect is a thing of the past as also mentioned by some bloggers here! No one wanted to come at that point of wherein disaster will be the doomsday! It will be a negative thinking if we will not admit that nuclear will be the future of the world either we like it or not! lets accept the truth, we should not be lied by just watching any disaster photo images thought we know it long time ago.accepting is difficult i know that but its the truth,we cannot avoid it even we dont like it and that includes me…I said once again, im against nuclear power too,,,but i accept that it is the power of the future……

    May 23, 2009 | 6:43 pm

  24. Mark Cojuangco says:

    As promised,

    My last posts have been posted on the “original bnpp post”.

    Included are all the answers to those who I have commited to answer.

    Be assured that I have internalized your sentiments and concerns.

    Thank you all, for your time and the lively and informative discussion. It was as well, a learning experience for me.

    I am now contemplating a BNPP blog or website. If it materializes, I will make sure to inform Market Manila.

    Paalam na po. Maraming salamat sa inyong lahat.

    For those who may wish to, you may reach me at; bnppmark@gmail.com

    May 24, 2009 | 8:43 am


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