No plans to stockpile uranium, but use of nuclear energy in S’pore is not off the table: Tan See Leng

2 weeks ago 54

Updated

Apr 03, 2024, 03:25 PM

Published

Apr 03, 2024, 03:20 PM

SINGAPORE - Singapore currently has no plans to stockpile uranium - a heavy metal used in nuclear energy generation - but it is building up its capabilities to understand and assess advanced nuclear energy technologies. 

Second Minister for Trade and Industry Tan See Leng told Parliament on Wednesday (April 3) that any decision made by the Government to deploy nuclear energy will require “detailed studies of the safety, reliability, affordability, and environmental sustainability of nuclear energy in our local context”.

He was responding to a question from Workers’ Party MP Gerald Giam (Aljunied GRC) if Singapore has plans to stockpile uranium to secure energy sources ahead of other countries shifting towards nuclear energy; and what preparations are being made to prepare a core of local talent to enter this industry.

Uranium is a naturally-occurring radioactive element that is a key fuel used in nuclear fission reactors, to produce electricity. In 2023, 22 countries, including France, Britain and the United States, backed a pact to triple nuclear energy capacity by 2050, in a bid to cut carbon emissions to net-zero by the same year.

There are two types of nuclear reactors. Nuclear fission technology, which is what most operational nuclear plants are based on, works by using neutrons to sp...

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