The China Syndrome? Nuclear Power Growth and Safety After Fukushima

Asian Perspective

Author/s (editor/s):

Amy King

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Lynne Rienner

Since the Fukushima disaster in Japan, the Chinese government has undertaken a number of measures to improve the safety of its nuclear facilities while simultaneously committing to a rapid expansion of nuclear power capacity. We explore the tension between these twin commitments, examining China's record of implementation of nuclear safety measures since Fukushima. We investigate how nuclear safety interacts with other priorities in shaping decisions about inland nuclear power stations and nuclear reactor design choice. We find that various safety measures have been implemented since 2011, but where their implementation competes with other priorities— such as the economic interests of local governments and nuclear corporations, and central government energy and development targets—safety is not always the primary concern.

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