New Scientist: Shiv Abhilash Bhardwaj, the technical director of the Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL), said that the group hopes to break ground on an advanced heavy water reactor next year. India, with high levels of thorium reserves, has desired thorium reactors since the beginning of its nuclear industry in the 1950s. Bhardwaj claims that the new reactor design will be safe enough to be located in major cities. However, nuclear engineers in the US do not consider heavy water reactor designs safe enough for metropolitan locations. Ralph Moir of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory believes that the focus on thorium reactors is inspired more by a desire for energy independence than by a concern for reactor safety. There are also questions as to whether NPCIL will actually follow through with the plan, since India has a history of overstating its nuclear energy goals. A plan put forward in 1969 by the Indian Atomic Energy Commission foresaw India producing 43 gW of energy by nuclear power by 2000, but only 4.8 gW of the country’s power today comes from nuclear energy.