China may approve new nuclear plantsApril 22nd, 2011 - 4:16 pm ICT by IANS
Beijing, April 22 (IANS) China may approve new nuclear plants, which were put on hold following the devastation at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant, a media report said Friday.
The Fukushima nuclear power plant was severely damaged by a powerful earthquake and tsunami that rocked Japan’s northeast coast March 11. The plant’s operator has been struggling to prevent radioactive leaks from the crippled reactors.
“Operating plants and plants under construction will soon be inspected and reviewed by a group of experts,” the China Daily quoted Lin Chengge, a senior expert at the State Nuclear Power Technology Corp Ltd (SNPTC), as saying.
An inspection of the Daya Bay nuclear power plant in Guangdong province was carried out last week.
Lin said: “Results of the inspection will be provided to the government so it can decide if safety improvements are needed.”
On March 16, the government said it would suspend approval for new nuclear projects, following Japan’s nuclear crisis, until a safety plan was issued.
“I think China will use the most advanced third-generation technology in all future nuclear plants,” Lin said.
Four reactors under construction will use the third-generation AP 1000 model designed by a US company.
“One of the units will have 70 percent of its components made in China.”
“Only the most advanced technology can restore people’s confidence in nuclear safety,” said Lin.
China could add 12 gigawatts of nuclear capacity annually and is expected to have 70 to 80 GW by 2020, said Zhou Dadi, director of China’s Energy Research Institute.
The country had a total of 10.82 gW of nuclear capacity at the end of last year.
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