Nuclear power plants moved out of South

Construction News

Ubon Ratchathani and Nakhon Sawan are picked as the principal locations of five nuclear power plants, with combined capacity of 5,000 megawatts, said a source from the Energy Ministry.

He cited huge local resistance in Nakhon Si Thammarat and Surat Thani, which made it impossible to locate the power plants in the two Southern provinces.

Advisor Burns & Roe Asia earlier shortlisted Nakhon Si Thammarat and Surat Thani from 17 locations, as the two provinces can accommodate the light-water reactor (LWR) technology. However, the ministry’s officials have so far failed to reconcile with local communities.

“By changing the locations, we will need to reconsider the technology choice,” the source said.

Under the Power Development Plan 2010, nuclear power plants, if approved by the government, will feed power into the system during 2020-2028. The new development plan will be submitted to the Cabinet early 2011 for approval.

The source also noted that if the government shows its intention to proceed with the nuclear power generating, it is required to set up additional budget to finance the Nuclear Power Programme Development Office, a unit under the ministry. That would also lengthen the life of NPPDO which is now supervised by designated-permanent secretary Norkun Sitthiphong. Set up during the Surayud government, NPPDO was tasked to prepare for the development within a 3-year timeframe.

Source: The Nation

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