China’s most recent five-year plan aims to increase Chinese nuclear power generation capacity to 70 gigawatts by 2025, up from 50 gigawatts. It appears that Chinese leadership has begun to view nuclear as increasingly important, not just because of its ability to help reduce both carbon emissions and air pollution—a problem which has had significant impacts on the health of the country—but also because of the strategic and economic value of having a strong nuclear technology sector.
This new plan represented a surprisingly ambitious target, which reflects an important shift in policy impetus that helped buoy the value of Chinese nuclear companies following a period in which there was a freeze on new plant approvals. China Nuclear Engineering & Constuction Corp. was up 10% and China National Nuclear Power Co. was up 6.9% in Shanghai.
This new goal will lift the share of non fossil fuel energy sources to 20% for the nation and also accelerate the development of newer technologies, including small modular reactors and floating nuclear reactors, which are part of what is considered 4th generation nuclear. China is already beginning to make advances with its own efforts to innovate in nuclear technology, as evidenced by having begun the fuel loading of the first domestically-produced Hualong One reactor design in September, 2020.
Read more at “China Gives Nuclear Power a Fresh Push in Drive to Go Green,” published at Bloomberg Green.