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Indian states vie for nuke power plants

As India plans to increase its civil nuclear power generation, a number of states are in the race for locating nuclear plants, a top Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCI) official said here on Tuesday.

“While we are on the lookout for suitable sites in the coastal states to set up new plants for enhancing nuclear power generation, a few inland states have also come forward to offer sites to build such plants,” NPCI chairman and managing director S.K. Jain told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.

Over the next three months, the state-owned NPCI will evaluate various sites in the coastal and inland states across the country for short listing some of them.

The coastal states vying for the projects are Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Orissa and West Bengal. The inland states are Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

“As part of the new civilian nuclear strategy, we propose to increase the power generation to 40,000 MW over the next two decades. We have initiated exploratory discussions with suppliers in the US, France and Russia for importing 20 reactors in the light of the recent Indo-US civilian nuclear deal,” Jain said.

With indigenous resources such as uranium deposits and plutonium driven fast breeder reactors, the country will be able to produce about 15,000 MW of nuclear power by 2020.

“Beyond that, we will have to import nuclear fuel from the US and other countries to augment our power generation,” Jain said after receiving the first fuelling head machine from Avasarala Technologies Ltd for installation in the fifth and sixth units of the Rajasthan atomic power project.

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