16 Jan 2012

Tahiti politician proposes French nuclear energy tax

5:34 am on 16 January 2012

French Polynesia's former president, Gaston Tong Sang, has called for a French tax on nuclear energy to compensate his territory for the legacy of France's nuclear weapons testing regime.

Mr Tong Sang made the call while launching the French presidential election campaign on behalf of Nicolas Sarkozy's UMP Party.

He says he has written to the French leader, suggesting a one euro levy on each megawatt of electricity produced by nuclear power stations be given to French Polynesia.

This, he says, could help decrease the territory's dependence on costly fossil fuels and help fund the use of other sources of energy.

Mr Tong Sang says French Polynesia has had to live with the aftermath of the French nuclear politics on both a humanitarian and environmental level.

France ended its weapons testing in 1996 and passed a law two years ago, acknowledging for the first time that its tests weren't clean.