top of page

Seminar No. 8 | Anti-Inland Nuclear Power Plant Activists’ Media Strategies, Impacts and Challenges

Updated: Mar 16, 2022

Date and Time:

9 June 2017 (Friday) 2:30-4:00p.m.


Room 1217, Department of Geography, 12/F, Academic and Administration Building, Hong Kong Baptist University


Anti-Inland Nuclear Power Plant Activists’ Media Strategies, Impacts and Challenges: A Case Study on the Jiangxi Pengze Project


This seminar will explore the roles of the media in participative deliberation. Using a case study approach and drawing upon in-depth interviews and content analysis, this seminar will focus on Wang Jiang Si Lao (望江四老), who are four senior and retired Chinese Communist Party cadres in Wangjiang County, Anhui Province. Along with citizen activists, they had been protesting against the Jiangxi Pengze Nuclear Power Plant since 2011. We examined how Wang Jiang Si Lao (望江四老), shortly after the Fukushima nuclear accident, proactively and strategically strived to receive endorsement and support from local county, provincial, and Central governments, and used traditional and new forms of media to bring the issue of “inland nuclear power” into public spotlight and gain social visibility and influences for public agenda building. Their endeavor, as a part of China’s ongoing anti-nuclear movement, was regarded as one of the main reasons why the proposed Pengze Nuclear Power Plant was suspended, and had a significantly impact on China’s nuclear power policy in The Twelfth and The Thirteenth Five Year Plan respectively in 2012 and 2016.

About Dr. Deng Lifeng

Dr. Deng is an associate professor of communication with the School of Communication and Design at Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China. His research interests include science communication, risk governance and communication in China. He has published several research papers on science communication and risk communication, and a book, Competing Voices? Deconstructing the mechanism of corporate public relations’ impacts on news production (Communication University of China Press, 2014).

In recent years, the Chinese government had been exploring inland nuclear power plants to fuel its growing energy demand, which prompted the “inland nuclear debate”. In studying the anti-inland nuclear movement, Dr. Deng focused on Wangjiang Si Lao, the four retired Communist Party of China cadres who devised strategies to protest against the Pengze project. They successfully made their appeals known to the Central government and other ministries, organised and mobilised local activists, and resorted to legitimate means to protest such as using social media and refraining from holding street demonstrations. Their strategies in the end had indirectly contributed to the eventual halt of approvals for future inland nuclear power plants.

Dr. Deng will be returning to AESC in July: he will be one of the featured speakers at the Conference on “Governing for Sustainable Energy Transitions: Perspectives from the Asian-Pacific Region” on 17 July, 2017.



E: T: 3411 7187


Disclaimer: AESC will take photographs and videos at the Energy Research Seminar Series to reproduce and to distribute in AESC’s educational, news, or promotional materials and AESC’s publications, whether in print, electronic or other media, including the AESC website. By participating at the Energy Research Seminar Series, you permit AESC to use, reproduce and distribute photographs and videos taken of you for such purposes.


8 views0 comments


bottom of page