Tue, 26 May 2020

BEIJING, China - There are currently eleven nuclear power units under construction in China, the largest number of nuclear power facilities under construction in the world.

The country has 47 nuclear power units already in operation, the third highest across the globe, accoding to a report by The People's Daily.

The Chinese government made the decision to venture into nuclear power in 1955. It is now a leader in reactor research and development, nuclear power station design, equipment manufacturing, engineering construction, and management of nuclear power units.

The China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) held a press conference on Wednesday to mark the 65th year of China's nuclear industry. Since 1955, CNNC has built five nuclear power bases in China, with its commercial nuclear power units amounting to 21, and six nuclear power units currently under construction.

CNNC's nuclear power units generated approximately 136.2 billion kilowatt hours of electricity last year, and accumulatively about 969.1 billion kilowatt hours, which voided the consumption of around 390 million tons of standard coal, which would have added about 966.1 million tons of carbon dioxide and about 29.1 million tons of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere.

The ecological benefit of the electricity generated by CNNC's nuclear power units over the years, according to CNNC, is equivalent to that of 2.6 million hectares of trees.

China has an enviable safety record, avoiding any major nuclear incident in its 65 year history, its slogan is "not one gram lost and not one piece missing.".

The country mines its own uranium. CNNC has established China's first kiloton-level uranium mine in Yili, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region. Another two kiloton-level uranium production centers are under construction in the Inner Mongolia autonomous region.

The corporation says it has ascertained six uranium deposits.It employs advanced mining techniques, integrating space-based remote-sensing and airborne geophysical, ground, and deep-well exploration. Uranium mining has reached a depth of 500 to 1,500 meters.

The third-generation uranium mining technology, represented by "CO2+O2" green in-situ leaching techniques, CNNC says, has achieved large-scale industrial application.

While the CNNC's focus is on nuclear power generation, China is considered to be housing the fifth largest nuclear weapons arsenal in the world, after the United States, Russia, Britain and France, and ahead of India, Pakistan, Israel, and North Korea, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute 2019 Yearbook.

China in 1964 adopted a 'no-first-use' policy which remains in force today.

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