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Time to retire Japan’s aging nuclear reactor at Genkai 

Decision looms on aging nuclear reactor at Genkai  https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20190117_34/ The operator of a nuclear power plant in western Japan says it plans to decide early this year whether to scrap one of the plant’s reactors, or extend its life.

On Thursday, Kyushu Electric Power Company President Kazuhiro Ikebe revealed the plan during a meeting with the governor of Saga Prefecture that hosts the Genkai plant.

Ikebe said his firm is looking into technical aspects of the plan, including whether the aging reactor could meet the stricter regulations introduced after the March 2011 nuclear accident.

The No.2 reactor at Genkai will turn 40 years old in March 2021. It has been offline since January 2011.

Post-disaster guidelines limit the operation of reactors to 40 years in principle, but allow extensions of up to 20 years with approval of the nuclear regulation authority.

Governor Yoshinori Yamaguchi told Ikebe that he hopes society will reduce its dependence on nuclear energy and eventually be nuclear-free.

Yamaguchi said the utility must understand that the decision it takes will come under public scrutiny.

Kyushu Electric put Genkai’s No.3 and No.4 reactors back online last year, but decided to decommission the No.1 reactor.

If the utility wants to extend the operation of the No.2 reactor, it must file an application with the government by March next year and take additional safety measures.

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January 21, 2019 - Posted by | decommission reactor, Japan

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