China to Triple Nuclear Power Capacity by 2026
China wants to build more nuclear reactors over the next few years to triple the amount of nuclear power it generates by 2026, state-owned China Daily reported.
"The pace of nuclear power projects in recent years is not in accordance with this target, and it's necessary to make sure the nuclear industry is back on track," He Yu, China General Nuclear Power's chairman, said.
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Analytics firm BMI Research noted that if the project is realized, China will overtake the United States with the most nuclear power. The country is allocating $570 billion to build more than 60 nuclear power plants in the next 10 years.
Aside from that, China also plans to produce 58 gigawatts of nuclear power into operation by the end of the decade, doubling its current 27 gigawatts capacity. It also plans to add more and bring 150 gigawatts by 2030. And by 2050, it plans to more than double its nuclear power capacity to 350 gigawatts, allocating over a trillion dollars in nuclear investment.
China's nuclear ambitions have faced repeated delays, including a suspension of approval for three years from 2011 as it performed safety procedures following Japan's Fukushima disaster. If production of third-generation nuclear reactors are not sped up, China would likely fail to meet its plan to decrease emissions.
The US is currently expecting to produce 100 gigawatts of nuclear power in 2030. A gigawatt of power could provide energy to about 700,000 homes.
As of now, China has 30 nuclear reactors, accounting for 2.5 percent of its electricity supply. It plans to build 24 more and increase the construction of a large commercial scale reprocessing plant.
Meanwhile, the world's nuclear capacity is expected to increase by 60 percent by 2040.