Japan quake no threat to China's environment, nuclear power plants

16:47, March 15, 2011      

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The Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection and the National Nuclear Safety Administration confirmed again on March 15 that all the nuclear power generation units in China are in normal operation,and it is closely following up the situation of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in the quake-hit area of Japan.

This is the third time that the Ministry has made such an announcement since March 12 when a hydrogen explosion broke out at a reactor of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant followed by another explosion on March 14.

The Ministry says that the nationwide radiation monitoring network was instigated on March 12 and no abnormal conditions have been found in the environment throughout the country.

Experts are optimistic so far, believing Japan's nuclear leakage poses no immediate threat to China, but at the same time they highlight the importance of closely monitoring the latest developments of the situation in Japan.

The Ministry of Environmental Protection also released that based on the analysis of the wind orientation, experts with the Beijing-based Regional Specialized Meteorological Center, one of the eight members of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), concluded on Sunday that China faces "no immediate threat" from the Japan nuclear leakage.

A sample test of the East China Sea water collected from a monitoring spot at located at 1,500 kilometers to 2,500 kilometers away from the Fukushima No.1 power plant shows no signs of radioactive substance, and more tests will be made, according to a report of China's national Xinhua news agency on Monday.

The accident at the Japanese nuclear power plant has been assessed to be at level 4 on the International Nuclear Event Scale, which is defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency as having "local consequences," including a "minor release of radioactive material."

In another report on Tuesday, Xinhua says that the potential geological and other natural risks have been taken into account in deciding the location of China's nuclear power plants.

China Guangdong Nuclear Power Holding Co. reassured the public that all its operating generating units, which includes the Daya Bay Nuclear Power Station and the Ling Ao Nuclear Power Station I and II, are in normal operation. Those units have 5 million kilowatts of installed capacity, according to the website of the company.

The structure of the power plants is sound enough to resist strong earthquakes and a contingency system is deployed to cope with emergency situations, according to the company.

By Li Jia, People's Daily Online

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