The country is poised to revise its energy development plans by nearly doubling its nuclear power capacity in the next decade, energy authorities have said.
The revision is still awaiting approval from the State Council, the Chinese-language 21st Century Business Herald yesterday cited sources close to the National Energy Administration (NEA) as saying.
There are currently 11 nuclear reactors in operation in the country with a combined capacity of about 9 gigawatts (GW), supplying more than 1 percent of the country's energy needs.
Photo taken Dec. 26, 2008 shows a huge construction site of the expansion project of the two million-kw generating units in the Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant in Haiyan, east China's Zhejiang Province. The two new generating units are scheduled to be completed and put into operation by the year of 2013 and 2014 respectively. [Xinhua]
NEA head Zhang Guobao last year said the country would raise the share of nuclear power in the national energy mix for 2020 from 4 percent, as set in 2006, to 5 percent. The target capacity for nuclear power was set at 40 GW by 2020.
The latest energy revision aims for nuclear power to generate 70 GW for the country by 2020.
The country would have to produce at least 60 GW of nuclear power to meet its 5 percent goal, the China Electricity Council (CEC) has said.
"We have the ability to raise our nuclear power capacity to at least 60 GW. 70 GW is not unthinkable," Fu Manchang, secretary-general of the Chinese Nuclear Society, told China Daily yesterday.
The authorities would also "start building eight more nuclear power plants in the next three years, with 16 reactors whose total installed capacity will surpass 10 GW", the NEA sources were quoted as saying.