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China rethinks nuclear power one year after crisis in Japan

(Xinhua)

13:52, March 13, 2012

BEIJING, March 13 (Xinhua) -- China must fully evaluate risks and define an accountability system when approving nuclear power projects, as the world has drawn profound lessons from Japan's Fukushima nuclear crisis, a lawmaker and academician said.

"The risk factor must be taken into account at the very beginning of a plan to build a nuclear power station, because potential risks at nuclear power stations are inevitable," said Xue Yusheng, a deputy to China's top legislature and the honorary president of State Grid Electric Power Research Institute.

In an interview with Xinhua on the sidelines of the annual parliamentary session, Xue joined a fresh wave of calls emphasizing safety in developing nuclear power projects in China, as Japan marked one year since a massive earthquake and tsunami triggered one of the worst nuclear crises in human history at the Fukushima nuclear power station.

"The development of nuclear power matters to national welfare and the people's livelihood," Xue said. "Thus, we can't come up with plans that view nuclear disaster only as a small probability and without preparation measures."

According to Xue, who is a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, any kind of power generation has its own disadvantages, and, for the sake of energy security, China, a big energy consumer, should not give up nuclear power.

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