Last updated at: (Beijing Time) Thursday, April 10, 2003
Nuclear Energy to Take 3 Percent of China's Total by 2005
China is to cut its reliance on fossil fuels by increasing the energy output of its nuclear power plants, atomic energy officials said Wednesday in Beijing. They set a goal of 3 per cent of the total national power output coming from nuclear plants by 2005.
China is to cut its reliance on fossil fuels by increasing the energy output of its nuclear power plants, atomic energy officials said Wednesday in Beijing.
They set a goal of 3 per cent of the total national power output coming from nuclear plants by 2005.
The country will continue to maintain tight safety surveillance of its nuclear facilities, said Xu Yuming, deputy director of China Atomic Energy Agency.
He told an international seminar that China is striving to design and manufacture large-scale nuclear power units independently in line with its principle of "moderately developing nuclear power.''
Nuclear energy would become more economical compared with other sources of energy, Xu said.
The official made the remarks at a three-day Regional Public Information Seminar on Nuclear Energy and Human Needs in Asia, co-sponsored by his agency and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). It is due to end Thursday.
Xu told 180 participants from a dozen countries that the installed capacity of China's nuclear power plants is expected to reach 8.7 million kilowatts in two years, when four new generating units will be put into operation, joining the current seven sets.
China has ratified the Kyoto Protocol, promising to prioritize development of clean energy while improving energy efficiency.
Nuclear power is a clean form of energy which can play a unique role in addressing energy shortages and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, he said.
In addition to developing advanced technology with its own intellectual property rights, China will seek to cut the costs for nuclear power plant construction, so that nuclear electricity will become cheaper, Xu said.
Pan Ziqiang, of the Nuclear Power of China National Nuclear Corp, said the per kilowatt-hour price of nuclear electricity from China's Daya Bay Nuclear Power Plant is expected to average US$0.018 by 2014, close to the price of nuclear power of the United States in 1999.
Since it began constructing nuclear power plants more than two decades ago, China has made nuclear safety and the proper handling of radioactive waste key priorities, Xu said.
"China's excellent record in the safe operation and environmental protection of its nuclear plants over past years is a good testimony to its nuclear safety surveillance measures, which are becoming mature,'' he said.
Su Xu, director of National Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety, said China's Ministry of Health set up a Centre for Medical Assistance in Nuclear Accidents in 1992.
Since then the centre has improved its medical response system to radiation and nuclear emergencies in China.
Werner Burkart, deputy director-general of IAEA, said he believed the number of nuclear reactors will surge in China, even though the percentage of power supplied by nuclear plants is not high at present.