Nuclear energy has been receiving a lot of critique especially since the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plan incident but experts reassured everyone that the unfortunate catastrophe was an anomaly, mainly caused by an earthquake and a tsunami that cut off the electricity from the exterior, which led to active reactors being automatically shut down, and emergency generators being destroyed.
China National Nuclear Corporation's (CNNC) Chairman Wang Shoujun outlined the priorities for China's nuclear energy sector and reiterated that safety comes first during a press conference on sideline of Two Sessions on Wednesday. [Special coverage]
Wang emphasized the importance to follow Premier Li Keqiang's remarks in the process of building a stronger, more advanced solid foundation for nuclear power in China, and to maintain a healthy relationship with the military to further research, technology development and national security.
And he strongly stressed the importance of maintaining a safe environment.
Wang said they must adhere to the strictest and most comprehensive safety measurement when developing more nuclear plants. He said that it is inevitable that nuclear energy will have to be commercialized eventually, though it would not be for the average every-day consumer, it will become more mainstream. And under the New Normal it is vital for CNNC to seize the opportunity and adjust to the supply-side reform and provide the necessary facilities in order to build a strong foundation prepared for the future transition.
As China's nuclear energy advances, it now has the competitiveness to compete in the world. This market is extremely competitive and to get ahead CNNC is utilizing our resources the most efficient way possible. By out-housing some necessary steps CNNC is optimizing efficiency and becoming an international player.
Background highlights (Source World Nuclear Association March 2017)
·Mainland China has 36 nuclear power reactors in operation, 21 under construction, and more about to start construction.
·Additional reactors are planned, including some of the world's most advanced, to give a doubling of nuclear capacity to at least 58 GWe by 2020-21, then up to 150 GWe by 2030, and much more by 2050.
·The impetus for increasing nuclear power share in China is increasingly due to air pollution from coal-fired plants.
·China's policy is to have a closed nuclear fuel cycle.