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China to go ahead with new nuclear power projects

The Chinese nuclear power developers are preparing for new projects.

Updated: May 26, 2011, 15:26 PM IST

Beijing: China has given green signal to go
ahead with the construction of 25 new nuclear power plants
besides initiating the process to clear plans to build few
more, undaunted by the radiation crisis from the crippled
Japanese nuclear plant at Fukushima.

The Chinese nuclear power developers are continuing
preparations for new projects, "signalling their undiminished
appetite for the clean energy despite Japan`s nuclear crisis"
`China Daily` reported on Thursday.

Meanwhile, preliminary work is being undertaken for
dozens of nuclear projects that await government approval, the
daily said.

China, which currently has 13 nuclear reactors, froze
approvals of nuclear projects on March 16 following Japan`s
nuclear crisis to conduct review of safety procedures.

Also, work was halted at 25 new plants which are under
construction to review the safety procedures to withstand high
intensity earthquakes.The freeze on new projects is unlikely to derail the
country`s goal of attaining 70 gigawatts (gW) of nuclear
capacity by 2020, the daily said adding that with the 25 units
currently under construction, China could easily reach 40 gW
in nuclear capacity by 2015.

The country will likely grant approvals for the inland
nuclear power plants in Jiangxi, Hunan and Hubei provinces
once the freeze is lifted, and this will help the country
achieve its goal by 2020, it said.

The China National Nuclear Corporation, (CNNC) said in
September that it plans to invest 800 billion yuan (USD 123
billion) into nuclear energy projects by 2020.

In a latest move, China GD Power Development Co Ltd and
China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group plans to build three
nuclear plants in northern Jilin province.

The companies intend to co-develop three nuclear plants,
in Songjiang, Liangjia Mountain and Jiutai, according to the
framework agreement on GD Power`s website, the daily said in
its report.

"State-owned power generators are still keen on being
part of the nuclear building group," said Xiao Xinjiang, a
nuclear power expert at the Energy Research Institute of the
National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

Meanwhile, preliminary work on China`s first inland
nuclear power project, the Taohuajiang Nuclear Power Plant, is
still in progress, while safety checks on existing facilities
and projects under construction are progressing nationwide, it
said.

The country is expected to issue its nuclear safety plan
in August, after which it will resume the approval process,
Lin Chengge, former deputy director of the National Nuclear
Safety Administration, told the daily.

PTI