(CNN)The US government has spent the past week assessing a report of a leak at a Chinese nuclear power plant, after a French company that part owns and helps operate it warned of an “imminent radiological threat,” according to US officials and documents reviewed by CNN.
The warning included an accusation that the Chinese safety authority was raising the acceptable limits for radiation detection outside the Taishan Nuclear Power Plant in Guangdong province in order to avoid having to shut it down, according to a letter from the French company to the US Department of Energy obtained by CNN.
Despite the alarming notification from Framatome, the French company, the Biden administration believes the facility is not yet at a “crisis level,” one of the sources said.
While US officials have deemed the situation does not currently pose a severe safety threat to workers at the plant or Chinese public, it is unusual that a foreign company would unilaterally reach out to the American government for help when its Chinese state-owned partner is yet to acknowledge a problem exists. The scenario could put the US in a complicated situation should the leak continue or become more severe without being fixed.
China Nuclear Plant Leak Response Evokes Chernobyl as Taishan Facility Insists It’s Safe
The U.S. government reportedly spent the last week assessing allegations of a leak at a Chinese nuclear power plant, after a French company that part-owns and helps operate it warned of an “immediate radiological threat.”
The Chinese plant denied the allegations and said that its generators are functioning normally, evoking memories for some of the lack of transparency around previous nuclear disasters.