Nuclear energy is inevitable for India, says top scientist

June 17th, 2008 - 8:41 am ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, June 16 (IANS) Nuclear energy is the inevitable option for meeting India’s future energy requirements and it’s going to play a very important role in the country’s progress, a senior scientist said here Monday. “From my point of view, I support the Indo-US nuclear agreement. There is no alternative and nuclear energy is inevitable to meet India’s demand of future energy consumption,” principal scientific adviser to the government R. Chidambaram told reporters here.

He said Prime Minister Manmohon Singh had also clearly stated that once all the agreements, like with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), were gone through, “there should be some additional elements to what we would be doing ourselves”.

“In the age of nuclear renaissance we should adopt a mitigating technology in our country. We should look for international cooperation but the initiative should be ours,” Chidambaram said at a function organised by Variable Energy Cyclotron Centre (VECC), Kolkata.

He said India has set a target to produce 20,000 MW of nuclear power by 2020. Presently, 4,000 MW of nuclear power is generated in India.

He agreed that India’s target to produce 20,000 MW of nuclear power is not sufficient compared to the total energy demand by 2020.

“We should look at the fast growth rate of developing nuclear energy efficiency rather than increasing volume,” he said.

He said two countries, India and China, are growing very fast in terms of nuclear power.

On other environmental issues, he said the government should also develop water security by de-salinating seawater and lay thrust on generating solar, thermal and hydropower.

Chidambaram, in town for delivering the third Raja Ramanna Memorial Lecture at VECC, is also the chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet. He is considered one of the noted nuclear scientists of the country who helped India become a member of the nuclear club.

Being a material scientist, he is also known for his illustrious contribution in the fields of Crystallography and quasi crystals.

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