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India should pace up construction of nuclear plants, says Rising

India needs to speed up construction period for each reactor to 73 months.

Press Trust of India  |  Singapore 

India should pace up construction of nuclear plants, says DG of World Nuclear Association

should scale up and pace up construction of plants to meet its insatiable power demand, renewable programme and climate change targets, the head of an international atomic body has said.

"Currently, has five reactors under construction with 3,300-MWe capacity. But this is too little for a country with so many people," said Agneta Rising, director general of the World Association.

India's first electricity plant became operational in 1969. Comparatively, has 20 reactors under construction with 22,596-MWe capacity, having had the first electricity in 1994.

Oil-rich has planned 16 reactors with 17,000-MWe, with first electricity expected in 2022, according to the association's Special Update report, which listed the kingdom among the newcomers to energy.

has the technology, expertise and skill to build its own plants, Rising said, adding there were no restriction on importing uranium. But despite the knowledge, takes about seven years or 84 months to complete a reactor, Rising pointed out.

The world average of building a reactor was 73 months in 2015. needs to speed up construction period for each reactor to 73 months, she stressed.

"has a lot of experience of science and it has all the technologies. But it must be able to scale up or ramp the electricity programme," she told PTI.

India's goal is to have 14.5 GWe of generating capacity online by 2024, up from 6,219 MWe at present, the report said.

The government has given in principle approval for new plants at 10 sites in nine states.

"It is important to have (nuclear) infrastructure where you can build prosperity and (take care of) health of the people," said Rising, stressing the importance of electricity supply reliability and the need to reduce pollution across the country for the people.

"needs to get on to do it (plants) on a scale and increase the construction pace of the plants," she said.

First Published: Tue, November 01 2016. 19:32 IST