Xi’s climate commitments propel China’s nuclear power expansion

China’s nuclear industry is expanding rapidly under Xi Jinping’s climate goals, aiming to increase capacity to 70 GW by 2025. This growth positions China as a global leader in clean energy production.

China’s nuclear industry is experiencing a significant surge, driven by President Xi Jinping’s ambitious climate goals aimed at reducing carbon emissions and achieving carbon neutrality by 2060. These goals have galvanized a strategic shift towards expanding nuclear power capacity, positioning China as a global leader in clean energy production.

In recent years, China has accelerated the development of its nuclear power sector to meet its environmental targets. The country has set its sights on increasing nuclear capacity to 70 gigawatts (GW) by 2025, up from the current 55 GW. This expansion is part of a broader effort to reduce reliance on coal and other fossil fuels, which still dominate China’s energy mix. Nuclear power, with its low greenhouse gas emissions and ability to provide stable, large-scale electricity generation, is seen as a crucial component of China’s energy transition.

The renewed focus on nuclear energy comes amid growing pressure to reduce pollution and address the challenges posed by climate change. China’s nuclear sector is already the third-largest in the world, and it continues to grow at an impressive pace. The country currently has 53 operational nuclear reactors, with 20 more under construction. This aggressive expansion reflects a commitment to achieving a cleaner, more sustainable energy future.

Investment in nuclear technology and infrastructure has also ramped up, with the Chinese government providing substantial financial support for the development of new reactors and the modernization of existing facilities. State-owned enterprises, such as the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) and China General Nuclear Power Group (CGN), are at the forefront of this push, leveraging advanced technologies to improve safety and efficiency.

China’s nuclear expansion is not just limited to domestic development. The country is also becoming a significant player in the global nuclear market, exporting its technology and expertise to countries in need of reliable and sustainable energy solutions. By promoting its Hualong One reactor, a domestically designed third-generation nuclear reactor, China aims to secure a leading position in the international nuclear power industry.