Tuesday, May 29, 2007

China & Nuclear Power: Center Staff Visits Daya Bay

Derry Bigby, VP, Zhang Xiaoping, China Office Director, & Norris McDonald, President

The Washington Post ran an article today that mirrored the Center's trip to China last month where we tourned the facilities described in the article. The most interesting thing about the article is the quote from China's leading university, Tsinghua University, where they stated that China would need 300 new nuclear power plants by 2050. We suggested 400 plants when we visited with them and they were amazed that we were recommending such a high number. Yet they quoted 300 when interviewed by the Post. The Center is already making a big difference in China.

Our trip is described at this link and it was inspiring. We believe that nuclear power will be aggressively pursued in China and that is why we went. We felt that the schedule was not aggressive enough and we traveled to China to encourage a faster building schedule. The more immediate danger for China is ground level air pollution. It is palpable in the urban and rural areas. Moreover, many Chinese people still smoke. The Center is committed to reducing the clear suffering the Chinese people will endure if ground level air pollution is not reduced. Nuclear power is a big part of that solution. We are promoting plug-in, fuel cell hybrid electric vehicles as the other solution to air pollution. We also toured a coal-fired chemical manufacturing facility and we are promoting the installation of scrubbers on coal plants.

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