Vietnam orders quake study for planned first nuclear plant
Aug 18, 2011, 6:47 GMT
Hanoi - Vietnam has commissioned a safety study on the site planned for the country's first nuclear power plant, following warnings that it was less than 100 kilometres from a fault line, a news report said Thursday.
Scientists have warned that the planned Ninh Thuan power plant could be exposed to a risk of tsunamis from the fault line on the coast of south-central Vietnam, state newspaper Thanh Nien reported, quoting Le Dinh Tien, deputy minister of science and technology.
The study is expected to run until early 2013. Construction is set to begin on the plant's two reactors a year later. The plant, to be built using Russian technology, is to be operational in 2020.
Hanoi has asked Japan to help build a second nuclear power plant, but the deal is pending Tokyo's approval of an atomic cooperation treaty.
Vietnam has relatively low seismic activity, with no significant earthquakes since 1980, and none over 7 on the Richter scale since 1882.
Le Huy Minh, director of the Earthquake and Tsunami Warning Centre under the Vietnam Institute of Geophysics, said the country's coast would be affected by a tsunami from anywhere in the South China Sean area.
The waters north of the Philippines pose the greatest danger because a quake there would cause a tsunami to hit Vietnam within two hours, he said.
Early-warning systems have been installed along the coast.
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