Global interest in introducing nuclear power is on the rise, with ground being broken for the largest number of reactors in decades last year, the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported.
According to the IAEA`s Year in Review 2008, while no new reactors came online last year, construction started on 10 new sites, the largest number in any one year since 1985, bringing the total number being built to 44.
At the end of last year, 438 nuclear power reactors were supplying roughly 14 per cent of the world`s electricity, UN News Centre reports.
Expansion prospects continue to be centred in Asia, with over half of the reactors under construction in the region, especially in China.
“India`s planned 15-fold expansion of its civilian nuclear power programme over the next two decades is expected to be facilitated by the removal by suppliers in 2008 of restrictions on the supply of nuclear technology that were previously imposed on it,” the report, which will be discussed by member States at the IAEA`s annual General Conference this September, said.
“While every country has the right to use nuclear power as an energy source, it also has the responsibility to ensure that this energy source is employed in a safe and secure manner,” the agency said, adding that it received a large number of requests last year from States considering the nuclear energy option for assistance in analyzing energy options.
Pic: Nuclear power plant