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Japan’s election gives reprieve for nuclear sector.

Japan’s election gives reprieve for nuclear sector, Argus,  By Motoko Hasegawa   1 November 2021

Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) secured a victory in the 31 October general elections to the lower house of parliament. This allows the government to maintain its updated energy policy, which lays out plans to restart safe nuclear reactors to help reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions.

The LDP secured a majority in Japan’s lower house after voting closed, without accounting for parliamentary seats secured by its junior coalition partner Komeito. This could make it easier for the LDP to push forward with its nuclear policy before the next general upper house election next year. Komeito had pledged to strictly adhere to the 40-year lifespan limit for reactors and a future no-nuclear society, as other opposition parties had insisted on.

LDP leader and prime minister Fumio Kishida and cabinet ministers last month endorsed a basic energy policy that did not include plans for construction or replacement of nuclear reactors and only focused on the restart of safe reactors. But the government did not directly prohibit building reactors, in a reprieve for the nuclear industry………….

Japan has restarted 10 nuclear reactors since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster closed all the country’s reactors to enhance their safety measures. But it will have to phase out existing reactors without any capacity additions. All Japanese reactors are allowed to operate for 40 years with a one-time option to extend their lifespan to 60 years under current nuclear safety rules. This has 15 of the existing 33 reactors with a combined capacity of 14,057MW closing by December 2030 and no operational reactors in 2050, assuming a 40-year lifespan.

November 2, 2021 - Posted by | Japan, politics

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