Could Nuclear Power solve Global Warming?

Written by Zaf Coelho. Posted in Nuclear


When is the point of no return?

According to a candidate to the White House that I shall not name, global warming is not caused by human activities. For people with a brain, all the stats are alarming. Since the Industrial Revolution, which started less than two hundred years ago, the global temperatures have risen by almost 1 ° C, threatening countless animal species and making storms, typhoons, cyclones stronger each year.

These are irrefutable facts. And unfortunately, global warming effects are increasingly palpable for many of us. If the trend continues, half of all animal species, your 5 star hotel in Venice and bungalow in the Maldives (and incidentally their population) will disappear, causing massive migrations and disruption of the Earth ecological equilibrium. The question is, when will humans have gone to the point where this problem becomes an unsolvable one?

It is hard to predict, but some scientists believe that we are awfully close, the most pessimistic ones even believe that this point has passed already. In any case, the diagnostic is very serious and we (almost) all know it.

How can nuclear energy help?

When we think about global warming and its terrible effects, we immediately connect it with renewable energy solutions; solar panels, wind farms etc. There is one energy that we never think about, the nuclear energy. Once a promising technology that meant a great civilization progress, public support for nuclear energy has decreased dramatically over the years. Two infamous nuclear catastrophes and the fact that most green political parties are against even the idea of the fission an atom are contributing factors. General public immediately connect the word ‘nuclear’ with ‘dangerous’, ‘dirty’ and ‘destruction’. But how many people actually know that nuclear energy doesn’t produce any CO2?

Now hear me, I am not saying that nuclear energy is the ultimate solution to all our problems, but instead that it can contribute to help us out of this critical situation. We will need a low-carbon source of energy to achieve independence from fossil fuel.

We know how to run nuclear power plants relatively reliably, and there is some progress being made. Generation III and IV reactors are being built or developed around the world, mainly in Asia, and are designed to be safer and run longer (up to 120 years), bringing the costs down. Why not continue to invest into a powerful and clean energy source? Yes, there are a number of problems, nuclear waste management, potential terrorist threats, natural disaster to name a few. But problems are inherent of human inventions, it is all about the amount of effort we put in to solve them.

How humans solve problems

Nuclear power plants are not perfect, when they explode, it’s bad. Spectacular events like nuclear catastrophes or plane crashes are rare, but they stick in our memories and frighten us durably. This fear paralyzes our logical reasoning and can make us take foolish decisions, like driving from point A to B instead of taking a plane. Statistically speaking you have a much higher chance of dying on the road. But being on the groundfeels safer. Is avoiding flying a solution to make planes safer?

Back to our global warming problem, if we continue doing nothing, or being so slow at doing an ersatz of something, our planet is doomed and us with it.

Our economies largely depend on energy supply to grow. No country is willing to give up economic growth because the capitalistic world we live in has made it indispensable. It will be decades, or maybe an entire century for us to switch to an economy that relies completely on renewable energy. We’re living through an extremely slow ‘green revolution’. I’m afraid that we won’t make it in time.

Complex problems need complex solutions. I believe that if we only put our hopes on renewable energy it is not going to work, it’s far too slow to cope with the energy greed of capitalism.

China and India, among the biggest emitters of CO2 are investing massively to build nuclear power plants and many other Asian countries are considering to do the same.

We have to be realistic, we are nearing the point of no return. Nuclear energy is clean, efficient and the technology is available. Governments and engineers need to continue making nuclear power plants safer and cheaper so that it can be part of the solution that will save our planet.

I would be happy to hear your thought on this issue, can nuclear power be part of the solution to global warming?

All these issues, from waste management to financing new builds will be discussed at the Asia Nuclear Business Platform. The 5th edition will take place in Shanghai from the 16th to 18th of May 2017. For more information on how you can participate, contact

Who profits from the Franco-Chinese nuclear cooperation?

Written by Zaf Coelho. Posted in Nuclear


Two key stakeholders, different paths

The European nuclear market is declining, or at best stagnating, whereas the Asian market is on the rise. France and China are two major stakeholders in the civil nuclear industry market and the two countries have been cooperating in the field for the past 30 years. After a period of disinterest, the nuclear industry is regaining momentum, particularly in the emerging Asian markets. In the 2016 ITA Civil Nuclear top Markets report, 4 Asian countries are in the top 5 for the overall ranking for the U.S civil nuclear exports, in order China, India, Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates. Global warming and the growing need for domestic and low-cost energy to support economic growth are two major challenges that nations around the world have to face in the 21st century.

The nuclear industry is seen by a number of countries as an efficient and potentially clean alternative to fossil energy. China is investing massively in new nuclear power plants and is currently building 27 nuclear reactors on its territory. Currently ranked 3rd, China should surpass France and the U.S by 2025 in terms of nuclear energy production. French companies such as Areva and EDF are trying to profit from the rapid growth of the Chinese nuclear industry.  The two companies are participating in the construction of two EPR (European Pressurized Reactor) in Taishan.

Although the French nuclear market is not completely dead with the construction of the EPR in Flamanville, it is not dynamic enough for the numerous French nuclear industry companies to prosper. The industry peaked in France in the 1970s and 1980s and made the nuclear energy the source of nearly 80% of the electricity, the highest proportion in the world. This rate is likely to decrease rapidly, with the recent political promises to decommission a number of aging power plants. The French nuclear industry had to start conquering the global market to prosper, with China as a cruicial partner.


A worldwide cooperation

Nuclear power plant under construction in Taishan, with a large participation of Areva and EDF

In November  2015, Areva and CNNC (China National Nuclear Corporation) signed key contracts concerning uranium extraction, nuclear waste management and transport. French President Francois Hollande has also stated that France would welcomed foreign capital as part of the Areva restructuring. This would not affect France’s sovereignty, Hollande reassured, as the French State would still own 87% of Areva’s capital. However this shows that Areva is in relative difficulty with an important debt, and is ready to accept foreign investment in an industry that traditionally was a state monopoly.

The Hinkley Point project, where two EPR are to be built by EDF, Areva and CNNC

The United Kingdom is probably the only exception to the European market’s stagnation. EDF, AREVA and CNNC are currently finalizing the two Hinkley Point EPR. The project will cost £18bn (S$30bn) with a 33% participation from the Chinese stakeholder, raising the British medias’ concerns about the participation. However, the newly appointed Prime Minister Theresa May has approved the project, which will make the proportion of nuclear produced electricity in the UK go up to 7% if finalized.

Is this cooperation profitable for both parties?

Both France and China are hoping to continue and push forward the nuclear cooperation. For now, the two countries seem to profit equally from the arrangement. France has 60 years of nuclear energy experience and willing to export its technology and expertise, and China is eager to invest in the industry to support its growth. But the situation is most likely to change for the French, and the Eldorado they once found in China may well become not profitable. Once the Chinese nuclear industry has reached its full maturity, will there still be a need for the French companies’ expertise?A major shift is happening in the industry from West to East. The companies will have to diversify their activities in Asia notably in new emerging and growing markets such as Vietnam, India, South Korea that are very promising.

Do you think the French and other traditional nuclear powers will survive the industry’s shift from West to East?

Every year, these major issues are discussed by experts and nuclear industry stakeholders from all around the world at the Asia Nuclear Business Platform. The 5th edition will take place in Shanghai from the 16th to 18th of May 2017. For more information on how you can participate, contact

Why Cyber Security is Important for the Nuclear Industry

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear


While designing a nuclear power plant, the safety of the power site contains two types of it, protecting the power plant from the natural disasters such as earthquake and tsunami, and also from a man-made attack. Recently, the Chairman of IAEA Yukiya Amano cited that nuclear power plants have been targeted by hackers ever since three years ago. Just as many other industrial control system, the cyber-controlling system at nuclear power plant is very easy to be the attack target. David-Besse Nuclear Power Plant in Ohio and Brown Ferry Nuclear Power Plant in Alabama were both affected by internet virus before. The nuclear energy industry began addressing cyber security more comprehensively after previous terrorist attacks.

The most effective way is to isolate the security system at nuclear energy facilities from the internet. Isolated key control systems using either air gaps, which do not implement any network or internet connectivity, or installed robust hardware-based isolation devices that separate front-office computers from the control system, thus making the front-office computers useless for attacking essential systems. As a result, key safety, security and power generation equipment at the plants are protected from any network-based cyber attacks originating outside the plant.

Another approach is enhanced and implemented strict controls over the use of portable media and equipment. Where devices like thumb drives, compact disks and laptops are used to interface with plant equipment, measures are in place to minimize the cyber threat. These measures include authorizing use of portable assets to the performance of a specific task, minimizing the movement from less secure assets to more secure assets, and virus scanning. As a result, nuclear power plants are well protected from attacks which was propagated through the use of portable media.

Training and insider mitigation programs have been enhanced to include cyber attributes. Individuals who work with digital plant equipment are subject to increased security screening, cyber security training and behavioral observation.

The cyber protection measures of nuclear power palnt include maintaining equipment listed in the plant configuration management program and ensuring changes to the equipment are performed in a controlled manner. A cyber security impact analysis is performed before making changes to relevant equipment. The effectiveness of cyber security controls is periodically assessed, and enhancements are made where necessary. Vulnerability assessments are performed to ensure that the cyber security posture of the equipment is maintained.

As in the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has extensive regulations in place that are closely monitored and regularly inspected to ensure cyber security at nuclear power plants. The NRC Cyber Security Directorate provides centralized oversight for this important area. In China, for example, after more than 10 years updating, a completed cyber security system was established in Daya Bay Nuclear Power Plant, which contains an independent access port and firewall system.

With the increasing concern on the cyber security, it will also become a topic of the 5th edition of Asia Nuclear Business Platform next May. For more information on this industry gathering, email

Nuclear industry pivots to Asia – Opportunities in key Asian markets

Written by Zaf Coelho. Posted in Nuclear


Asia is one of the regions where nuclear power is “high on the agenda” and could be one of the drivers for global nuclear power deployment, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

“This Asia-Pacific region has one of the fastest economic and growth rates in the world. Hence, it follows that the demand for affordable and sustainable energy sources is expected to rise.” – Mikhail Chudakov, Deputy Director-General, IAEA

The nuclear industry is pivoting towards Asia with key export markets transitioning from the traditional and mature markets of North America and Western Europe to emerging markets in Asia.

China has kept its place as the fastest growing market for nuclear energy. The country currently has 30 units in operation, 24 under construction, 40 planned and dozens more proposed. China also announced plans to export its reactor technology.

While China is undoubtedly providing massive business opportunities for the nuclear industry, other key Asian countries like India, Vietnam, Japan and South Korea are providing opportunities such as:

  • Legal services for NPPs
  • Consulting services for NPPs
  • Advisory services for decommissioning
  • Project management services
  • Gen III nuclear equipment imports

With this in mind, the 5th edition of Asia Nuclear Business Platform(ANBP), developed by an international Advisory Board, will provide a perfect platform for nuclear solution providers looking for new business opportunities and forge strategic business relationships in the Asian markets which is worth billions of dollars. Key Asian stakeholders from governments, utilities and NEPIOs will provide participants with insights on business prospects in their respective markets.

Ps: Keen to gain more insights on specific nuclear opportunities in each of the key Asian countries? Email zaf@industry-platform

What is the Potential of India’s Nuclear Industry

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear


Today another big nuclear market besides China that attracts many attention in the world is India. Nuclear energy is the fourth-largest source of power in India after thermal, hydroelectric and renewable sources, which has an installed capacity of 5780MW in 21 units and provides 3.5% of India’s total power consumption.

India has a large demand of nuclear energy

With the rapid growth of the economy, the power demand of India has been increasing even faster in the past few years, for instance, the 1193 TWh gross produced in 2013 was more than triple the 1990 output. Once Narendra Modi came to power as the Prime Minister, the nuclear energy is seen as the solution to India’s electricity supply. The Indian government plans to build 40 reactors units by 2032, to increase the output about 10 times by the nuclear energy. The International Energy Association predicted that in 2040, India will be the second largest market for the nuclear industry only behind China.

The Indian Government Actively Seeking Cooperation Opportunities

In June during Narendra Modi visiting the United States, the US government and the Indian government agreed to move ahead with the construction of 6 nuclear reactors in India by Westinghouse. The deal is estimated about $20 billion. Besides, earlier of this year in January, India and France discussed about starting a new nuclear project in West India in 2017. India and Japan signed a MoU in 2015, which said these two country will enhance their cooperation on future nuclear industry.

Besides, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) has also established the long term relationships with AREVA, GE-Hitachi, and Westinghouse.

Completed R&D and Supply Capability of the Nuclear Industry

Nuclear power for civil use is well established in India. Since building the two small boiling water reactors at Tarapur in the 1960s, its civil nuclear strategy has been directed towards complete independence in the nuclear fuel cycle, necessary because it is excluded from the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty due to it acquiring nuclear weapons capability after 1970.

As a result, India’s nuclear power program has proceeded largely without fuel or technological assistance from other countries. The pressurised heavy-water reactor design was adopted in 1964, since it required less natural uranium than the Boiled Water Reactors, needed no enrichment. India’s nuclear energy self-sufficiency extended from uranium exploration and mining through fuel fabrication, heavy water production, reactor design and construction, to reprocessing and waste management. It has a small fast breeder reactor and is building a much larger one. It is also developing technology to utilise its abundant resources of thorium as a nuclear fuel.

With the large demand, government strong support, and sufficient R&D capability, it is no doubt that India is one of the most important and attractive market today to the global nuclear industry. As Dr J. Kumar concluded on the 4 Asia Nuclear Business Platform“The Indian nuclear power industry is expected to undergo a significant expansion in the coming years. Administrative, legal and commercial arrangements are in place to allow India to carry out trade of nuclear fuel and technologies with other countries and significantly enhance its power generation capacity.

The Indian nuclear industry is always an important topic of Asia Nuclear Business Platform and it will be discussed during the 5 Asia Nuclear Business Platform in May in Shanghai. For more information please contact:

UK Parliament First Time Debates on Hinkley Point C Project

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear


Hinkley Point C, the nuclear power plant which China, France, and UK are all involved, was finally approved by the UK government. As a demonstration of the Chinese nuclear industry on the global stage, this £18 billion project has a wild attention from not only the nuclear industry but also many other fields.

Recently after the approval of the government, the parliament of the United Kingdom had a debate on Hinkley Point C project, to analyse the benefit for UK and its residents from this nuclear project.

First of all, there are three changes of the policy that France (EDF) and China (CGN) need to accept before the construction of the power plant eventually start. Firstly, after Hinkley, the British Government will take a special share in all future nuclear new build projects. Secondly, the Office for Nuclear Regulation in UK will be directed to require notice from developers or operators of nuclear sites of any change of ownership or part-ownership. Thirdly, the UK Government will significantly reform its approach to the ownership and control of critical infrastructure to ensure that the full implications of foreign ownership are scrutinised for the purposes of national security. These changes will definitely increase the intervention from the UK government in the future nuclear power projects, which the UK will remain one of the most open economies in the world, the public can be confident that foreign direct investment works in the country’s best interests.

For the United Kingdom, it isn’t required to pay any until the nuclear power plant commence to produce electricity. This £18 billion investment in Britain provides an upgrade in our supply of clean energy. When it begins producing electricity in the middle of the next decade it will provide 7% of the UK’s electricity needs; giving secure energy to 6 million homes for 60 years. Besides, all the construction risk will be on the investors which means EDF and CGN but UK according to the contract.

Hinkley unleashes a long overdue new wave of investment in nuclear engineering in the UK, creating 26,000 jobs and apprenticeships and providing a huge boost to the economy, not only in the South West, but in every part of the country through the supply chain of firms, big and small, that will benefit from the investment. EDF have also confirmed that UK businesses are set to secure 64% of the value of the £18 billion investment being made, which is the biggest single capital project in the UK today.

Britain needs to upgrade its supplies of energy, and we have always been clear that nuclear is an important part of ensuring our future low-carbon energy security. The Government is committed to ensuring the country has a secure low carbon energy supply. Hinkley Point C will be a critical part of that, and will inaugurate a new era of UK nuclear power – building on Britain’s strong nuclear legacy. Currently, the UK has eight nuclear power stations which generate around 20% of power in the UK. Almost all of these existing power stations are due to close by 2030. This underlines why the Government needs to take decisions now on how we will ensure we have sufficient and diverse supply fit for future generations.

About the security which is most concerned by the public, the construction of Hinkley Point C will be under the close scrutiny of the Office for Nuclear Regulation – which is independent of the industry and of ministers. The Office for Nuclear Regulation has the power necessary to halt construction or require amendments to any part of the plant if at any point it is not completely satisfied with the safety of any part of the reactor and its associated construction.

As we can see, it is obviously good but harm to the United Kingdom of this nuclear project. I believe the government made the decision after a cautious consideration and saw the benefits. This is, as I said in my post last year when I first heard the news: Hinkley Point C is a Triple Win to UK, France, and China.

The international cooperation in the nuclear industry will be discussed during the 5th edition of Asia Nuclear Business Platform next May. For more information on this industry gathering, email

What Can We Expect For the Nuclear Industry following the G20 Summit 2016?

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear

Last week, the G20 2016 Summit was successfully hosted in Hangzhou China. As we know, G20 is an international forum mostly focusing on the world economy, leaders from the major countries of the world gathered and a variety of topics were discussed including the nuclear industry on deepening existing and starting new bilateral or multilateral cooperation.

Not as many traditional industries of which the development has been severely affected by the slowly growing global economy, the nuclear industry is growing fast today driven by its enlarging market. During the opening remark, China’s president Xi Jinping emphasized again that the world economy is facing the challenge of stagnation and the key to overcome it is to strengthen globalization and innovation, drive the economic growth from the third world, and it is the duty of the world to help Africa get industrialized. What he said is exactly working for the nuclear industry as well.

As the host state of G20 2016, China reiterated the concept of “sustainable development” and “inclusive growth”, and first time put Africa prior on the world development to-do list. This year in June, China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) approached Sudan and proposed to assist Sudan, which is one of the least developed countries in the world, establish its nuclear energy supply. Egypt also announced its future nuclear development plan and signed the contract with Russia one month later.

During the G20 Summit, the President of Argentina Mauricio Macri met with the president of CNNC Qian Zhimin. Besides the previous Hualong-1 project that CNNC is constructing in China, Macri and Qian Zhimin achieved an agreement on building another heavy water reactor plant in Argentina. Macri highly commented the cooperation between China and Argentina in the nuclear industry during the G20 conference, he promised that the construction of the new heavy water reactor project will commence in 2017.

President of Argentina Mauricio Macri and president of CNNC Qian Zhimin discussing on the future nuclear project

From the recent movement of the nuclear market, we can expect that in the near future, the Third World will be the biggest engine, which means a bigger emerging market of the global nuclear industry.

Another news from the G20 Summit is the new discussion on UK’s nuclear project Hinkley Point C. The Prime Minister of UK Theresa May promised during the summitthe government will give the final answer to the ups and downs of the project by the end of September 2016.

The emerging market of the nuclear industry is always the main focus of Asia Nuclear Business Platform, and it will be deeply discussed during the conference. For more information on this industry gathering, email

Nuclear Energy Potential in Developing Countries Today — Southeast Asia

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear

Today, the global nuclear industry comes its third prosperity. Unlike the previous two times in 1950s and 1970s, with the deepening of the globalization and the marketization of the nuclear industry, more and more developing countries show the interest of the nuclear energy and it boosts the industry.

Southeast Asia, South Asia, Middle East, East Europe, Africa, and Latin America are the potential market attracting companies bidding for its planned or ongoing nuclear projects.

As it was discussed in the Asia Nuclear Business Platform, I would like to share some of my thoughts on the nuclear potentials in Southeast Asia and South Asia above.

Nuclear Industry in Southeast Asia

  1. Demands of the nuclear energy

Being close to the second and third largest economy in the world, Southeast Asia today is one of the fastest economic growing region in the world. In 2015, the GDP in ASEAN grew by 4.4% which is higher than the global average of 3.1%. Even though the economy in China is continuously slowing down, IMF still looks highly of the Southeast Asia’s economic growth in 2016. Besides, Southeast Asia has a large population of 0.6 billion and it is still growing. The growing economy and population caused the demand of more energy.

Electricity in Southeast Asia is primarily generated from fossil resources and hydro-power. While the region is awash with energy resources, rising demand has placed a strain on them. Southeast Asia has been a net oil importer since long time ago, and most of the natural resources are located in South China Sea or far away from the land where require massive infrastructure investments. In addition, the signing of the Paris Agreement about climate change last year resulted in a control of exploitation of the fossil resources.

Rising energy demand and soaring energy prices, coupled with increasing consciousness about climate change,  will combine to create a strong impetus of Southeast Asian countries to embark on a nuclear path.

2.Current Situation of the Nuclear Industry by Country

Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand are standing ahead of other Southeast Asian countries that they have already floated proposals for the construction of 16 nuclear reactors (4 from Indonesia, 4 from Thailand, 8 from Vietnam).  For Vietnam, it has considered establishing nuclear power generation since 1995, and firm proposals surfaced in 2006, and Russia has agreed to finance the nuclear projects since 2020.

The government of Malaysia, Cambodia and Myanmar talked about the nuclear energy and they all showed the interest. However, these countries have not published any plan of the future nuclear power plant, even like Malaysia has already set up its government agency to look after the nuclear industry.

The Philippine nuclear program started in 1958 with the creation of the Philippine Atomic Energy Commission, in 1973, the Philippine governement announced to build their nuclear power plant. However, after the Three Mile Island accident in America, the nuclear project in Philippines has been suspended till today. This year, the new president of Phillippines Rodrigo Duterte said he wants to revive the former nuclear project in Philippines to resolve the power issue in the country.

Bataan Nuclear Power Plant in Philippines

3. Hesitation of the Nuclear Industry Development

It is no doubt that in the short term future, the nuclear industry in Southeast Asia will still stay at the planning or feasibility researching stage.  The hesitation mostly come from the consideration of nuclear safety, political stability of the country, financing of the project, and technology capacity.

Doosan Vina, the first qualified nuclear equipment manufacturing base in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia is located on the active border of crustal plates where seism and tsunami are considered as the frequent natural disaster. Thus, the nuclear engineers will have to deal with the challenge of earthquake and the risk of radiation leakage caused by the natural disaster in the future.

The instability of the politic environment in Southeast Asia is a big problem that slows down the development of the nuclear industry in the region.  The lack of enforcement and authority inside their country is a common difficulty of the government from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Philippines.

Thus, to embrace the bright future of the nuclear industry in Southeast Asia, these are the issues that must be discussed.

What do you think of the nuclear industry in Southeast Asia?

Global Times: the Failure in Lianyungang is the “Pain” of China’s Nuclear Industry

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear


Recently, besides the Olympic Games, another news which attracted massive attention in China was the protest in Lianyungang, a city 480 kilometers away from Shanghai in the north, against a nuclear waste processing plant which was planned by CNNC and AREVA. Residents in Lianyungang shouted slogans and waved banners outside government offices at the weekend to complain about the health impacts, which caused body conflict as well. So far, due to the strong objection, this project has been suspended by the local government.

On 11 August, Global Times which is one of the most important government media published a commentary: the failure (of government) in Lianyungang is the pain of China’s nuclear industry. This event has very serious consequence and bad influence in China.

What is the nuclear project and how is the protestation?

French nuclear fuel group Areva in 2012 agreed to cooperate with China National Nuclear Corp (CNNC) to build a reprocessing facility in China, without identifying the location. Locals say that Lianyungang, a port city in Jiangsu province, is a prime candidate, because a large new nuclear power station is being built by CNNC nearby. What’s more, as a portal city, Lianyungang has very convenient transportation on shipping and rail, which allows the city to easily gather the spent fuel from different places.


Tianwan Nuclear Power Plant in Lianyungang

“Building a nuclear waste processing plant in Lianyungang is a recipe for disaster for future generations, local people have a right to express anger,” a hotel worker who declined to be named said.

Pictures posted online showed locals massing in a public square surrounded by hundreds of police. The gathering people alleged that they were beaten by the police which resulted one death of them.

Why are people against nuclear in China?

By now, China has 34 nuclear power reactors in operation, and 20 under construction, and work about to start on more, which makes China the biggest nuclear growing country in the world.

However, safety fears grew following a series of meltdowns at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant in March 2011 that were intensely covered by China’s state-run media. China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection said in a report the same year that the country’s nuclear safety situation was “not optimistic”, and that the use of differing types of reactors in Chinese plants made the sector “difficult to manage”.

In addition, Chinese people are losing their trust of the government especially on this kind of big industrial project. Last year, a PX plant exploded in Zhangzhou which was proved safe by many experts and the local government, and the big blast in Tianjin in the last summer also raised up the worry of residents.


CNNC and Areva announced in 2015 about this CNY 10billion project

How will the public attitude influence the future of Chinese nuclear industry?

This Lianyungang protest is not the first time that Chinese citizens objected the government on a nuclear project. 2013 in Jiangmen, 50 km away from Taishan Nuclear Power Plant, a construction site of nuclear fuel processing factory was abandoned because of the resistance from local residents.

Public protects like Lianyungang and Jiangmen are definitely not good for the development of the nuclear industry to China. This is presently one of the biggest challenge that China need to overcome.

In my opinion, the key to the public acceptance in China is the average educated level about nuclear. As for most of Chinese the only resource to get knowledge of nuclear is reading news in which the most mentioned are nuclear accidents like Fukushima or Chernobyl. Thus, I praise that the Chinese companies like CNNC, CGN, SPIC all have their public communication events to let people get in touch with nuclear.


Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant opened for public visitors

What is your opinion towards the protest and public communication in the nuclear indsutry?

Nuclear power developments in Asia will be discussed during the 5th edition of Asia Nuclear Business Platform next May. For more information on this industry gathering, email

Will Japan’s Nuclear Industry Seize the Opportunity?

Written by Jeremy Kang Deng. Posted in Nuclear


As an industrialized and affluent nation in Asia, Japan has the advanced technology and a mature market of the nuclear industry. However, after the Fukushima disaster, the Japanese nuclear industry has stagnated until last year when Sendai Nuclear Power Plant restarted operation.

Today, the global nuclear industry is boosted by a large demand from developing countries including China, South East Asia, Middle East, Africa. Japan also announced their ambition to overcome the difficulty caused by the Fukushima disaster and to play an important role in the nuclear industry in the future. What are Japan’s advantages in the global nuclear industry in 2016?

  1. Abundant Experience in the Nuclear Industry

Japan started research on the nuclear energy since the 1950s and it constructed its first nuclear power plant in 1963 which was a boiling water reactor and decommissioned in 1976. In the past 5 decades, 55 reactor units have been built in Japan and they provide 30% of the power in Japan in 2011. For example, TEPCO, which is the biggest electric power company, owns and operates 17 nuclear reactor units.

In the nuclear industry, when it go for a bid, experience is always a big issue need to be considered.  That is why when China wants to export its technology, China always constructs one demonstration plant first to increase the credibility.


  1. Integrated Nuclear Industry Structure

Japan has one of the most sophisticated industrial foundation in the world which is also applicable for its nuclear industry. Few countries in the world like Japan has the capability of the entire nuclear supply chain including nuclear reactor design, nuclear equipment manufacturing,  nuclear fuel cycle management, nuclear power plant operation and maintenance.


For example,  Ninh Thuan Nuclear Power Plant was designed and constructed, and will also be maintained by Japan Atomic Power Company which is a company formed up by Japanese utilities such as TEPCO and Hitachi Ltd, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries company. Therefore, for most of developing countries like Vietnam that does not has sufficient local industry to support the nuclear energy, countries have integrated nuclear industry are more easily to take the market.

  1. Complete Legislation on the Nuclear Industry

The first law about the nuclear energy in Japan was issued in 1955. In the long history of the nuclear development in Japan, the legislation on the nuclear energy was completed step by step. Compared to China whose nuclear legislation is still left as blank, a complete legislation system allows the Japanese nuclear industry has a specification of standards.

  1. Active Foreign Policy for Nuclear Business

Japan is deeply involved in the global nuclear industry and as such is banking on exports of nuclear power plants. The Japanese big corporation Toshiba owns 87% of Westinghouse, Hitachi and Mitsubishi have tie-ups with GE and Areva which means that Japanese firms are major players in nuclear energy.

Besides, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is a longstanding advocate of nuclear energy. In Japan, he pushed the country to restart its nuclear power plant. Globally, he is the pitchman of the Japanese nuclear industry. Japan signed Memorandum of Understandings on nuclear energy with Turkey, UAE, and India when Abe visited  each of them. Furthermore, the Abenomics of fiscal stimulus and monetary easing policy  will also encourage the export of Japan’s nuclear industry.


 MoU on civil use of nuclear energy signed between Japan and India

What do you think of Japan’s nuclear industry?

The nuclear industry in Asia will be discussed during the 5th edition of Asia Nuclear Business Platform next May. For more information on this industry gathering, email