Nuclear crisis in Japan but Uranium price to rebound on news from China and India
Modern Tokyo Times
Lee Jay Walker
The nuclear crisis in Fukushima at the Daiichi nuclear power plant caused major ripples in the nuclear sector. Many nations outwardly began to question the role of nuclear energy and reliance but with each passing day the cold reality of the importance of nuclear energy is dawning. Therefore, China and India are to continue with their ambitious plans in this sector.
Immediately after March 11 when the 9.0-magnitude earthquake struck Japan and it became known that the tsunami had not only killed tens of thousands of people, but had also impacted negatively on the Daiichi nuclear power plant; then the price of uranium slumped by 27 per cent.
Daily images of the stricken Daiichi nuclear plant alongside massive scaremongering meant that national governments which had future plans in the pipeline were coming under the microscope.
However, despite this, and uranium being just below 9 per cent down this year, it appears that the worse may be over for the price of uranium. This applies to China and India who will continue to forge ahead with their respective nuclear power projects.
Indeed, according to Bloomberg and other sources, it is reported that nuclear energy will grow by roughly 46 per cent by 2020 amongst the leading five nations which use nuclear energy.
This increase is mainly down to China and India because these two nations, whose economies are growing rapidly and which have huge populations, believe that nuclear energy is the best option.
China’s Nuclear Energy Association in May announced plans to increase nuclear energy by around eight times by 2020. India’s Atomic Energy Commission, within one day of China’s announcement, stated that India had plans to increase nuclear production by 13 fold and this ambitious plan applies to this target being achieved by 2030.
Therefore, the statements made by China and India means that the price of uranium should not only stabilize but also rebound because the future looks positive for this sector despite many alarm bells.
It is clear that leaders in China believe that future economic growth depends greatly on a diverse energy policy. Therefore, the only current option is for nuclear energy to be part of this diverse energy policy in order to satisfy the growth of electricity demand.
If future projections are met then nuclear usage in China, India and South Korea will surpass that of America, France, Germany and Japan, when you combine both groups.
It must be remembered that fossil fuels was the main concern for nations like America, France and the United Kingdom before the Fukushima crisis. Therefore, the nuclear option was seen to be positive. After all, greenhouse gas emission worries are focused on fossil fuels and not the atomic sector.
These nations may rue their over sensitivity and it must be remembered that the tsunami killed tens of thousands of people and not nuclear energy. Indeed, the over-hype of the nuclear crisis often relegated the crisis caused by the tsunami and it makes you wonder where the priority belongs?
China and India will clearly look at what happened at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in order to safeguard and implement policies which will lead to greater security and safety mechanisms.
The vice secretary general of the Nuclear Energy Association in China, Xu Yuming, stated that “Of course, the overall plan won’t be changed. China faces power shortages and we need to change our energy mix. To resolve these issues, we must develop nuclear.”