China to overtake US as World’s largest nuclear nation

China to overtake US as World’s largest nuclear nation

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BEIJING: China is set to overtake the United States to have the world’s largest nuclear capacity over the next 10 to 15 years as it races to build new reactors to combat pollution, the World Nuclear Association (WNA) said on Tuesday.

It will overtake France to have the second-highest number of nuclear reactors by 2020, Agneta Rising, the WNA’s director general, said at an annual energy conference in Singapore.

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“For China, the air pollution is a major driver,” she said on the sidelines of the Singapore International Energy Week.

In Asia, 134 operable reactors generated 400 terawatt-hours of electricity in 2015, making up 16 percent of global nuclear generation, the WNA said in a report released on Tuesday.

Another 39 reactors comprising 47.4 gigawatts (GW) are currently under construction in Asia, which comprises nearly two-thirds of global reactor construction. China makes up the bulk with 20 reactors under construction.

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