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  • sponge_bob_is_no_square sponge_bob_is_no_square Jan 5, 2013 5:58 PM Flag

    China plant construction restart

    (Reuters) - Work on China's largest planned nuclear facility has restarted, state media said on Saturday, a sign that the thaw in the country's nuclear industry is gaining pace after it was frozen in response to Japan's Fukushima atomic crisis in 2011.

    Building of the Shidao Bay nuclear plant in coastal Shandong province, eastern China, resumed on December 21, Xinhua news agency reported.

    Beijing - in common with many governments worldwide - suspended work on nuclear projects after the Japanese earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 which triggered a radiation disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi reactor complex.

    More recently it has softened its stance on nuclear energy. In October last year, China announced revised plans for the sector and said it would start approving new reactors, though at a slower pace than pre-Fukushima.

    Before the Japanese disaster, many in the industry had expected China to set a 2020 capacity target of around 80-90 gigawatts (GW), but that target was scaled back to 58 GW.

    The Shidao Bay plant is expected to start supplying electricity to the grid by the end of 2017, and ultimately to have the capacity to supply 6,600 megawatts, Xinhua said.

    Initial investment in the project, led by power producer Huaneng Power International Inc., is planned to be 3 billion yuan ($481.52 million), Xinhua said.

    ($1 = 6.2303 Chinese yuan)

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    • Speaking of "thaws"
      BEIJING (AP) -- China is experiencing unusual chills this winter with its national average temperature hitting the lowest in 28 years, and snow and ice have closed highways, canceled flights, stranded tourists and knocked out power in several provinces.

      China Meteorological Administration on Friday said the national average was -3.8 degrees Celsius (25 degrees Fahrenheit) since late November, the coldest in nearly three decades.

      The average temperature in northeast China dipped to -15.3 degrees C (4.5 degrees F), the coldest in 43 years, and dropped to a 42-year low of -7.4 degrees C (18.7 degrees F) in northern China.

      In some areas - northeastern China, eastern Inner Mongolia, and north part of far-western Xinjiang province - the low has hit -40 degrees C (-40 degrees F), the administration said.

      The state-run, English-language China Daily reported Friday that about 1,000 ships were stuck in ice in Laizhou Bay in eastern China's Bohai Sea.

      The meteorological administration said Saturday that ice had covered 27,000 square meters (10,500 square miles) of the sea surface by Thursday, the most expansive since 2008 when authorities began to collect such data. The administration expects the ice to continue to grow.

      China, unlike America, has a pretty good energy policy which really does use an "all of the above" approach rather then subsidizing impractical, high cost generation like wind and solar while penalizing coal and nuclear.