China set to restart nuclear power program

After a pause to review safety and environmental protocols, China has reached a new set of rules that may allow companies to begin development of nuclear power plants in the country, according to Bloomberg.

Many countries put their plans for nuclear power generation on hold after the March earthquake that hit Japan and crippled the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, causing a reactor meltdown that has yet to be fully contained.

Some countries took a strong response to the incident, such as Germany, which declared an early end to its nuclear program.China, however, initiated a safety review that has now resulted in a set of rules for the operation of nuclear power plants and the uranium mining sector.

"Technically, all conditions would be met after the State Council approves this new safety regulation," Zhao Chengkun, vice president of the China Nuclear Energy Association, told Bloomberg. "I think it’s good news for China’s nuclear industry."

There are already 27 nuclear plants under construction with another 50 in various stages of planning. Reuters reports that the country already has nearly 11 gigawatts of nuclear capacity and had been planning to increase that number around 80 gigawatts by the start of the next decade.

The PennEnergy Research area offers the latest developments in the Chinese nuclear sector.

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