Monday, February 3, 2014

Site selection process underway for more nuclear power plants in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Feb 3 (APP): KANUPP I and KANUPP II will lay the foundation of more large size nuclear power plants and the process of site selection for future plants is going on. 

PAEC Director Ghulam Rasool Athar said this while addressing a workshop arranged by PAEC for the media here, to give them orientation about basics of nuclear technology, nuclear power production in Pakistan, radioactivitiy and its effects. 

Ghulam Rasool said, “The Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) will move on to produce 42,000MW electricity by the year 2050.” He said with the passage of time, indigenization was increasing. He said when KANUPP I was commissioned, Pakistan was only the 15th country in the world to commission a nuclear power plant.

“Embargoe was imposed in 1976, but Pakistan kept the plant operational through self-reliance.” Fuel and spare parts were prepared within the country.

Talking about radiation, Advisor PAEC Ahmad Talat said radiation had always been a part of natural environment. When life began on earth, radiation levels were much higher than today. “Most of the radiation dose that we receive from artificial sources, comes from medical applications, and only a tiny fraction originates from the nuclear power industry.”

Responding to a question about emergency situation in case of any mishap, Director Engineering  PAEC Dr Khawar Naveed said the emergency classification system had been defined by Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority (PNRA), based on International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) guidelines.

He said emergency plans for each nuclear power plant were prepared by the PAEC and approved by the PNRA. Emergency plans are  updated periodically and tested in emergency exercises under the supervision of the PNRA, he added.

Speaking on the occasion, PAEC Chairman Dr Ansar Parvez rejected all the concerns regarding safety of nuclear programme. “By the Grace of Allah, the programme is in safe hands.”

He said the first nuclear unit at Chashma, imported from China, had beenworking efficiently for the past 14 years and the second one  also doing equally well for more than two years.

“Construction of two more units is proceeding smoothly and is several months ahead of schedule,” he added.

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