Close to 15,000 tonnes of uranium is required for achieving supply security of fuel for nuclear plants in the country according to the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), DNA has reported. DAE manages atomic energy installations of the country. The body has given the information to a parliamentary panel.
The panel’s report was tabled before the Lok Sabha in the on-going Parliament session. The panel recommended that necessary steps should be taken to ensure new uranium mines are opened as soon as possible to help reduce the dependance on imported uranium. It also noted that the 10 new Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs) will require about 1250 metric tonnes of natural uranium dioxide fuel.
Currently, a large chunk of domestic production of uranium comes from the Jaduguda mines of Jharkhand. The extraction cost from this mine is high and that makes it "unviable" as compared to imported uranium according to the panel’s report. Uranium reserves are available in Andhra Pradesh, Meghalaya, Haryana, Karnataka, Rajasthan, and Tamil Nadu.
The government plans to build a ‘Strategic Uranium Reserve’ to ensure reliable supply of uranium for its power reactors according to DNA’s report.
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