The latest news about Vietnam’s nuclear power plants
VietNamNet Bridge – Nuclear power experts believe that Vietnam still cannot build a nuclear power plant now. The Japanese side has slowed down the process of giving support to Vietnam in nuclear technology.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) has issued a circular stipulating the procedures on setting up nuclear power projects, having projects examined and approved.
The circular, taking effect on December 1, 2013, stipulates that the basic design must go in accordance with the government’s regulations that guide the implementation of the Atomic Energy Law.
The design drawings will be provided by the contractors which comply with the international standards and the current provisions of the Vietnamese laws.
Vietnamese nuclear power experts still keep their viewpoint that Vietnam still cannot build a nuclear power plant right now. They have put assumptions about the possible incidents to occur when operating a nuclear power plant.
Professor Nguyen Khac Nhan, former strategic advisor to EDF, the French power group, thinks Vietnam may be divided into two halves, while the national economy would get paralyzed and the land strip in the central region would be attacked by radioactive contamination for many years, in case a nuclear catastrophe like Chernobyl or Fukushima occurs.
Professor Tran Huu Phat, Chairman of the Council for Science, Technology and Training under the Institute of Atomic Energy Nuclear, also said he himself does not feel absolutely secure with the current nuclear power plant management method.
Meanwhile, Dr. Vo Van Thuan, former Head of the Institute of Science and Nuclear Engineering, now Advisor to the national program on nuclear energy, said: “There are still too many problems that need to be solved before we can be sure that Vietnam is capable enough to use nuclear power.”
Though Vietnam and Japan in September 2011 signed an agreement on the cooperation on building the Ninh Thuan 2 nuclear power plant, Japanese mass media has recently warned that the agreement implementation may be slowed down due to many reasons.
One of the reasons cited by Tokyo is that Japan still lacks an agency and a system that manages the nuclear technology export and deals with the problems to be arisen in case nuclear crises occur.
Regarding the implementation of the Ninh Thuan nuclear power plant project, Nguyen Manh Hung, Deputy Director of the Ninh Thuan Nuclear Power Plant project management unit told the local press in late August 2013 that the construction of the infrastructure items that serve the Ninh Thuan 1 and Ninh Thuan 2 plants would start in 2014.
The Voice of Russia has quoted Russian designers as saying that the Vietnamese first nuclear power plant in Ninh Thuan province may be similar to the Tianwan plant in China.
The source said “E4 Group” showed the Vietnamese side the technical and economic bases of the Ninh Thuan 1 plant construction work. The optimal design for Ninh Thuan 1 is “AES-91” by St Petersburg-based VNIPIET Institute.
It also quoted its sources as saying that the design by the institute allows the maximum use of the capacity of Vietnam's electricity grid, while it helps reduce the costs for building the plant in accordance with the standard technologies.
The project is also believed to be able to satisfy the requirements in the “post-Fukushima period.”
Compiled by C. V