The 37-billion-yuan nuclear fuel processing project, which is run by the China National Nuclear Corporation, was located in Heshan, a city under the jurisdiction of Jiangmen prefecture city in Guangdong province. In operation, the project would produce 1,000 tons of uranium and an annual revenue of 3 billion yuan, approximately double Heshan’s revenue in 2012. The uranium processing project in Jiangmen was supposed to supply fuel to existing and future power plants in Guangdong, a major Chinese industrial powerhouse and a center of nuclear energy expansion. 
In March 2013, the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) signed agreements with the Heshan government regarding both land use and investment for the industrial park, according to state media. Villagers had expressed optimism over the proposed project. Some 160 villages from 48 households then signed an agreement to participate in the local government's relocation plan. The 229-hectare plant would have affected 13 villages, with Lianzhu providing most of the key land. Apart from an up-front payment of 220,000 yuan to be distributed among the families, villagers were expected to receive construction subsidies and farmland compensation and be moved to a new site the same size as their current village near their town government headquarters.
The public did not learn about the project until 3 July 2013, when local authorities released the Social Stability Risk Report online. The report stipulated a 10-day public consultation effective from 4 July. As China pushes an aggressive expansion of nuclear power it is running into a major stumbling block - a breakdown of trust, post-Fukushima, in official assurances of public safety.  Because the official channels were overwhelmed, residents could not get satisfactory responses. Local residents expressed their opposition through both online platforms and official consultation channels, such as faxes, emails, and hotlines.
From 5 to 10 July, local authorities launched publicity on mass media lectures by experts and information sessions to assure residents about the safety of the project. However, Internet users, particularly Weibo users, continued to question the rationale and appropriateness of the site, the impartiality of the risk evaluation, potential safety hazards, emergency response plans, and the ill-conceived arrangement of public consultation. In addition, members of the local People’s Congress, the bar association, writers association, and the food association also voiced their concerns.  Because Jiangmen adjoins Hong Kong and Macau and has historical connections to the two special administrative regions, residents from Hong Kong and Macau also took part in the opposition to the nuclear project. Anti-nuclear activists in Hong Kong, including Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, have also launched a petition to oppose further expansion of nuclear capacity in Guangdong. In addition to the strong opposition from Jiangmen residents, who took to the streets chanting slogans such as "Protect my homeland", the project drew stiff opposition from associations of former Jiangmen residents. They were worried that if the nuclear project is built, it will scare away all overseas investment, and then the real estate prices in Jiangmen and its neighboring cities will drop. 
The concern intensified as the consultation was approaching completion. On 12 July 2013, thousands of residents took to the street to voice their opposition, and they rallied in front of the Jiangmen prefectural government building. Opponents called on protesters to dress in red for "an innocent stroll" in the city's Donghu Square. They had planned to go ahead with the rally, even though authorities had earlier promised to double the original 10-day public consultation period. Protesters facing off with helmeted police officers chanted slogans and carried banners ranging from "Anti-nuclear", “give us back our rural homes; We are against nuclear radiation.” to "We want children, not atoms."  In response, the government decided to extend the consultation to 23 July. The next day, both the Heshan government and the Jiangmen government announced the cancellation of the project. "The people's government of the city of Heshan has decided to respect the public opinion and will not consider CNNC's Longwan industrial park project," the city government, a county-level city under the administration of Jiangmen, said in a statement. More than 200 police officers were deployed, but most in the crowd simply left after the announcement. 
However, the residents were worried that the governments had only postponed the plan, and hundreds of residents gathered again outside the Jiangmen government building. "We don't believe the project will be dropped permanently because our government has no credibility at all," one participant in his 40s said. "I am afraid that the municipal government will use some excuses to resume it." Finally, on 14 July, the Jiangmen government publicized the “No. 1 Government Notice” to formalize the decision. At the time of this writing, no further development is publicly known. 
This is the first publicly known major protest to involve the nuclear power industry in China.  Far from the jubilant crowds in downtown Jiangmen, the decision to cancel a proposed uranium-processing plant was met with dismay in the remote farming village of Lianzhu. "It's a good deal for all the villagers," said an official from Zhishan town, which oversees the village. "The compensation plan had been made between the county government and 12 representatives for the 160 villagers." Many villagers said they could not understand the opposition from protesters in Jiangmen, about 30 kilometers away. Some thought the protesters were exaggerating the risks. "[They] do not understand the details of the uranium-processing plant very well," one villager said. "It's a pity that our government was forced to give up such a good project." In Jiangmen, however, protesters said the villagers were too focused on the compensation to see the downside. "They are just farmers; they do not have enough knowledge and awareness about nuclear crises," said by Wu who took part in the protest rallies. "The villagers just care about how much compensation they will receive. They don't have any long-term planning and social responsibilities, but we do." However, a Taiwanese businessman who signed a 50-year lease with the local government for 20 hectares of Lianzhu farmland in 1998, was indifferent about the outcome. "My lease still has 35 years and I can keep on growing fruit trees, raise pigs and fish."
China plans to plough tens of billions of dollars into the construction of dozens of nuclear power projects across the country by 2020, as part of efforts to reduce its reliance on dirty coal-fired power and cut air pollution. Industry insiders also blamed the cancellation of the project on poor communication and a lack of public education. They say if things do not improve more protests could spring up elsewhere, threatening those plans to build new reactors. Guandong is already one of the country’s largest centers of nuclear power generation. It operates five nuclear reactors and plans to build another dozen. The CNNC plans are part of a concerted national effort to reduce China’s dependence on coal and boost the use of other forms of cleaner energy production.