Nigeria takes step towards use of nuclear power

Nov 10, 2009 01:00 AM

Nigeria took a step towards using nuclear power for electricity generation, agricultural produce preservation and health care, among others, with the foundation-laying of low and intermediate nuclear waste management facility.
Performing the ceremony at the Nuclear Technology Centre, NTC, Sheda Science and Technology Complex, Abuja, Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Alhassan Zaku, said the "remarkable development" which included the laying of the foundation for a researchers' hostel within the complex, was a significant milestone in the nation's commitment to the emplacement of the requisite scientific and technological infrastructure towards realising the dream of fully deploying nuclear energy for socio-economic development.

"Our structured programmes and activities will position the country not only to generate electricity from nuclear power plants, but also apply the technology in food and agriculture, human health as well as in minerals exploration and industry," he said.
In this regard, he said plans were on to commercialise the gamma irradiation facility in the complex by using it for the preservation of food items.
"Working together with the private sector in a PPP (public-private partnership) arrangement, the gamma facilities will be used to condition food for export to overseas countries in order to earn much needed foreign exchange for the country," Zaku said.

He disclosed that the Federal Government was implementing an approved national nuclear power roadmap, saying the elements of the roadmap would be accomplished using a three-phased implementation strategy. This involves manpower and infrastructure development, power reactor design certification, regulatory and licensing approvals, and construction and start-up.
"These two projects, therefore, are in the first phase, and I am glad to note that the implementation of national nuclear power programme is steadily on course," the minister said.

Source / This Day
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