China nuclear power plant. Image: Pete Niesen Shutterstock
The announcement is from the President of one of the largest Chinese energy companies: the relaunch of nuclear power should help the country reach its development goals by 2030.
It currently has 46 nuclear power plants with a capacity of 42.8 GW.
China could build 6 to 8 nuclear power plants each year as soon as the approval process for energy development projects returns to its normal course: the announcement was made to Reuters by the President of the state energy company China National Nuclear Corporation , Yu Jianfeng.
The development of new nuclear reactors should allow China to meet its development goals by 2030, the company spokesman added. After almost three years of inactivity, in 2019 China began construction of two new nuclear complexes in the southeast of the country.
China’s development program called for the construction of nuclear power plants with a capacity of 58 GW by 2020. At present, however, there are “only” 46 active plants, with a total capacity of 42.8 GW. Another 11 reactors are under construction, with a capacity of 10.8 GW (despite the 30 GW initially planned).
China is the fourth largest country in the world in terms of installed capacity and the third in terms of the number of active nuclear facilities. Despite the large investment in the sector, in 2017 the energy produced by the nuclear sector represented only 3.9% of the total.
Hualong-1 – HPR1000 type reactor. Image: By Testing Shutterstock
China was the first country in the world to complete the construction of a nuclear power plant powered by a third-generation pressurized water reactor such as those developed by Toshiba-Westinghouse Electric Company or the French EPR.
Yu Jianfeng also told reporters that construction work on the first “small-scale” modular reactor on Hainan Island will begin at the end of 2019 , initially scheduled for 2017.
The announcement comes just days after the publication of the National Energy Administration, which reported a record installed capacity of 728 GW of renewable power plants for 2018, 12% more than the previous year.
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