Jordan’s parliament suspends plans for nuclear reactors

Jordan’s lower house on Wednesday voted for suspending the country’s plans to build nuclear reactors until necessary fund is available and feasibility studies are completed, state-run Petra news agency reported.

The 120-member lower house decided to suspend the project, saying "it will lead the country to a dark tunnel and it will be difficult for the Jordanians to shoulder its consequences," according to a copy of the lower house’s decision obtained by Xinhua.

It decided to suspend the plans for creating nuclear reactors until a suitable location is determined for the country’s first nuclear power plant.

Jordanian activists, environmentalists and tribes members held several demonstrations over the past few months, rejecting the country’s plans to build nuclear reactors for power generation.

The demonstrators, who repeatedly called on the government to resort to alternative energy such as solar power and wind energy instead of nuclear energy, said the creation of nuclear reactors will harm the environment and the health of Jordanians.

Jordan, which imports about 95 percent of its energy needs annually, decided to resort to nuclear reactors to generate power.

Jordan, which incurred billions of dollars in losses after the curt in natural gas supply, applied recently for international agencies for funding to purchase fuel oil and fuel products for power generation.

The Kingdom has also recently announced plans for building a liquefied gas terminal in Aqaba to import natural gas from Qatar in light of a rising demand on power.

Jordan was scheduled to announce the site of its first nuclear reactor and the technology to be used in the reactor by the end of 2012.

The final agreement to build the nuclear reactor is scheduled to be signed in the second half of 2013 after which work will start to build the reactor.

Last year, the commission received technical and financial offers from a consortium by France’s Areva and Japan’s Mitsubishi, Russia’s Atomstroy export and Atomic Energy of Canada to build the reactor.