Mounting concerns over damaged nuclear reactors in Japan will prompt India to revisit its own nuclear safety strategies, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said, indicating that Japan’s trauma will play a role in shaping the final framework for handling nuclear-accident liabilities in India. “The tragic nuclear incidents in Japan in the aftermath of the recent earthquake and tsunami should make us revisit our strategies for nuclear safety,” Mr. Singh said Friday. “I have ordered a thorough review by the department of atomic energy.”
Mr. Singh’s comments follow China’s decision Wednesday to suspend the approval of new nuclear projects until revised safety rules are ready. India and China have ambitious programs to develop their civil nuclear-power programs in order to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels, as energy demand grows in their fast-expanding economies.
China alone aims to add a further 160 plants, while India plans to build 58 and a total of 482 new plants are being planned world-wide. Earlier this week, India said it won’t alter its plans to massively scale up its nuclear power capacity following the crisis in Japan, but it may consider implementing “additional safeguards” at its plants to prevent any catastrophe.