nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

Yamaguchi court rejects residents’ call to halt last Ikata nuclear reactor in Ehime Prefecture

n-ikata-a-20190316-870x558Supporters for the plaintiffs hold banners that read “Unjust ruling” and “Have you forgotten Fukushima?” after the Iwakuni branch of the Yamaguchi District Court rejected a plea to halt a nuclear reactor in Ehime Prefecture, on Friday in Iwakuni, Yamaguchi Prefecture.

 

March 15, 2019

YAMAGUCHI – A district court on Friday rejected a plea by residents to halt a reactor at the Ikata nuclear power plant in Ehime Prefecture.

The decision by the Iwakuni branch of the Yamaguchi District Court is in line with rulings made by other regional courts and allows the No. 3 reactor to continue operating. The plant is managed by Shikoku Electric Power Co.

Unit No. 3, the sole remaining reactor at the plant, passed the state safety screening process that was revamped in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis. But concerns remain about its safety, which led residents to turn to the courts to seek an injunction.

Of the more than 30 reactors in Japan, excluding those set to be decommissioned, only a few are in operation.

Read more :

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2019/03/15/national/yamaguchi-court-rejects-residents-call-halt-last-ikata-nuclear-reactor-ehime-prefecture/#.XIwI2SIzbGg

Advertisements

March 18, 2019 Posted by | Japan | , | 2 Comments

In rural towns like Shikoku’s Ikata, the Japanese nuclear industry is making a quiet comeback

n-nuclear-a-20181201-870x580
A port with orange farms dotting the mountains in the background in Ikata, Ehime Prefecture, which relies on the nuclear power industry for revenue
November 30, 2018
IKATA, EHIME PREF. – On a side street near a darkened Ikata shopping arcade full of abandoned storefronts, the Sushi Ko restaurant is unusually busy on a weekday.
Balancing a tray full of drinks, Sachiyo Ozaki said most of her restaurant’s customers were there because of an industry shunned elsewhere: nuclear power.
 
“He drives a minivan to take workers to the plant,” she said, gesturing toward a man sitting at the counter. Pointing to another man sipping a beer, she added, “And he works in construction, so they’ve been busy too.”
“We’re all for nuclear power, and you can print that,” Ozaki said.
In the mostly residential neighborhood around her restaurant, hotel rooms and local inns were also packed with workers preparing to reopen Shikoku Electric Power’s Ikata nuclear plant, nestled on the Shikoku coast at the base of the verdant Sadamisaki Peninsula.
Nearly eight years after an earthquake and tsunami triggered nuclear meltdowns at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s Fukushima No. 1 plant, the battered industry is making a quiet and somewhat unexpected return.
Ikata is a poster child for that recovery. In September, a court reversed a decision that had idled Shikoku Electric’s sole nuclear reactor for about a year, paving the way for the operator to reopen the facility in late October.
Regional utilities like Shikoku Electric have aggressively fought a string of lawsuits since 2011, hiring veteran lawyers to beef up their legal teams. At the same time, they wooed towns where nuclear plants are based, visiting with residents door to door while the government kept up a stream of generous subsidies for local projects.
Thanks in large part to this strategy, Japan is on track to have nine reactors running in the near future.
That is a far cry from the 54 running before 2011 — all of which were idled after the Fukushima disaster — but more than analysts and experts expected, considering it seemed at the time like the end of the road for the country’s nuclear industry.
A Reuters analysis calculates that as few as six more reactors are likely to restart within the next five years, eight will mostly likely be mothballed and that the prospects for two dozen others is uncertain.
Despite that cloudy outlook, nuclear power recently overtook renewables like wind and solar in the country’s energy mix for the first time since Fukushima.
Japan embraced nuclear power after World War II, spurred by the promise of clean energy and independence from foreign suppliers.
But the botched Fukushima disaster response sowed public distrust in the industry and the government.
Given that skepticism, some see a recent run of court victories by utilities as the resurgence of an alliance of industry, government and host communities that for decades promoted the construction of nuclear facilities.
“If our losing streak continues, we could see 20 to 25 reactors come back online,” says Hiroyuki Kawai, a prominent anti-nuclear lawyer who represented citizens in a suit against Shikoku Electric.
Since 2011, hundreds of citizens represented by volunteer lawyers like Kawai have filed nearly 50 lawsuits against the central government and utilities in 25 district and appellate courts.
In Ikata, Shikoku Electric spent months gaining approval for a restart from the tougher post-Fukushima regulator, rebooting one of its plant’s three reactors in 2016. But in December 2017, an appellate court issued a temporary injunction keeping the reactor, already idled for routine maintenance, shut down for nine more months.
In response, the company pulled more staff into its legal department and drafted its head of nuclear power to supervise the team. The utility also recruited outside lawyers who had handled cases for other operators.
“There are only a handful of lawyers knowledgeable about nuclear litigation, so they’re popular and sought after,” said Kenji Sagawa, the deputy general manager of the company’s Tokyo office.
Yoshiaki Yamanouchi, 76, began his career in nuclear litigation in 1973 when he represented Shikoku Electric in a landmark suit brought by Ikata residents seeking to stop the plant from opening.
He still represents the utility and works with other companies, advising younger lawyers fighting similar cases, which he calls “superficial,” in far-flung district courts.
“Utilities, in particular Shikoku, have gotten much smarter about fighting for the plants they know they can reopen and mothballing others that would cost too much time and money,” Yamanouchi said. The utility is decommissioning two of the three reactors at Ikata.
Shikoku Electric would not disclose how much it has spent fighting legal challenges, but said it was a fraction of the cost of idling a plant.
Every month a nuclear reactor sits inoperative, the utility spends ¥3.5 billion for additional fuel at its conventional power plants. Shikoku has also spent ¥190 billion on safety upgrades to meet stricter rules set by the Nuclear Regulation Authority.
Activists have seen some victories. Kansai Electric Power Co. has had its reactors slapped with temporary injunction orders multiple times over the years. All of these decisions were later overturned by higher courts.
“Before Fukushima, these utilities won by default — now, they have to work harder,” said Yuichi Kaido, a lawyer who has spent three decades dueling Yamanouchi in court.
Shikoku Electric still faces several lawsuits and injunction requests. A Hiroshima court rejected a request from residents to extend the suspension of the Ikata reactor on Oct. 26, a day before the operator restarted it.
The quiet revival of the industry is most tangible in rural areas like Ikata. Rural regions are home to the bulk of the country’s nuclear plants.
Ikata is best known for its mikan mandarin oranges harvested on terrace farms on the sides of steep hills overlooking the Seto Inland Sea and Uwa Sea.
The town, with 9,500 residents, relies on nuclear power for a third of its annual revenue. Since 1974, Ikata has received more than ¥101.7 billion in such payments.
These funds literally built the town; Ikata’s roads, schools, hospitals, fire stations and even five traditional taiko drums for festivals were all paid for with subsidies.
“My biggest struggle now is finding one or two more pillars for this town other than nuclear power,” said Ikata Mayor Kiyohiko Takakado.
The town and utility’s mutual dependence stretch back decades.
Former Mayor Kiyokichi Nakamoto was a city councilman in Ikata when he successfully wooed the utility to his hometown. On the walls of the dim parlour of his home are framed commendations from two prime ministers, thanking him for his contributions to the national energy policy.
“We were a poor village with only farming and fishing,” the 90-year-old said. Had the town failed to attract the plant, Ikata would have gone broke, he said.
In the wake of the Fukushima disaster, Shikoku Electric campaigned to reassure residents of their plant’s safety. Employees wearing the company’s blue uniforms went from house to house to explain how their plant was different from Fukushima No. 1 — and therefore safe.
“If something like Fukushima happened here, our reputation would be destroyed in an instant,” said orange farmer Shigeto Suka, 54, as he checked still-green mikan on tree branches.
He and other farmers in Yawatahama, a neighboring town 15 km from the plant, worry that even a hint of contamination would devastate their brand.
After the 2011 disaster, Fukushima’s farmers and fishermen were unable to sell their produce because of fears over contaminated food. Dozens of countries still have restrictions on Fukushima produce.
For others in the area, the Ikata plant feels like an inextricable part of life.
Hiroshi Omori, 43, spent most days over the summer at Shikoku Electric’s visitors’ house overlooking the Ikata plant. His three young children take free art classes there while Omori and other parents wait in air-conditioned rooms sipping water and tea.
But Ikata is projected to shrink to 5,000 residents over the next 20 years, and Takakado recently said he found it hard to imagine an industry that could replace nuclear power.
This year he joined dozens of other mayors nationwide to voice their support for the industry and ask the government to clarify its position on building new plants or replacing old ones.
“I’m just trying to prevent the town from losing even more people,” he said.
 

December 7, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Shikoku Electric restarts Ikata nuclear reactor following failed court challenges

n-ikata-a-20181028-870x786.jpg
The No. 3 unit at the Ikata nuclear power plant had been idle since October 2017 before restarting Saturday
 

 

MATSUYAMA, EHIME PREF. – Shikoku Electric Power Co. on Saturday restarted a reactor at its Ikata nuclear power plant after a suspension of nearly one year due to a high court order.
The restart of the No. 3 unit at the plant in the town of Ikata, Ehime Prefecture, announced by the power company overnight Friday, came after a high court accepted an appeal by the utility in a late September ruling that there are no safety risks associated with potential volcanic activity in the region.
The utility said the unit reached criticality, a controlled self-sustaining nuclear fission chain reaction, on Saturday evening as planned.
It said it will start producing and transmitting electricity on Tuesday, before possibly putting the reactor into commercial operation on Nov. 28.
The decision by the Hiroshima High Court was an about-face from its provisional injunction issued in December last year that demanded the power company halt the No. 3 unit until Sept. 30, following a request from a local opposition group. The group argued that Shikoku Electric underestimated the risk of pyroclastic flows reaching the plant if there is a major eruption at Mount Aso, about 130 km away.
The temporary suspension order was the first in which a high court banned operations at a nuclear plant since the 2011 meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 complex.
But the high court said on Sept. 25 that the group’s claim of a possible destructive volcanic eruption during the plant’s operating period has no satisfactory grounds and that there is a small chance of volcanic ash and rocks reaching the facility. A Hiroshima court on Friday also rejected a call from residents to have the restart blocked.
The reactor had been idle for maintenance since last October. Before that, it had gone back online in August 2016 after clearing stricter safety regulations implemented in the wake of Fukushima.
“We’d like Shikoku Electric to constantly pursue improvements in safety and reliability, and information disclosure with high transparency,” Ikata Mayor Kiyohiko Takakado said.

November 3, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Ikata NPP’s reactor to restart as Hiroshima court judges volcanic erution frequency to be extremely low

Ruling puts onus on anti-nuclear plaintiffs citing volcanic risks

Capture du 2018-09-27 10-21-00
Lawyer Hiroyuki Kawai, center, explains the Hiroshima High Court’s decision on Sept. 25 to lift a temporary injunction barring operations of the Ikata nuclear plant.
September 26, 2018
HIROSHIMA–The Hiroshima High Court has significantly raised the bar for plaintiffs seeking suspensions of nuclear plant operations on grounds of a possible volcanic eruption.
In a ruling handed down on Sept. 25, the court overturned a temporary injunction order that had halted operations at the Ikata nuclear plant, saying the plaintiffs must present highly credible evidence of the risk of a catastrophic volcanic eruption.
The plaintiffs argued that Shikoku Electric Power Co. must suspend operations of its Ikata plant in Ehime Prefecture because of the dangers posed by Mount Aso in central Kyushu, Japan’s southern main island.
They said a pyroclastic flow from the volcano would reach the plant about 130 kilometers away in the event of an eruption on a scale similar to one that occurred about 90,000 years ago.
But the high court dismissed their argument by referring to “socially accepted ideas.”
“The frequency of such an eruption is extremely low,” Presiding Judge Masayuki Miki said. “The government has not taken any measures to deal with it, and a large majority of the public don’t see the risks of a major eruption as a problem, either.”
He added, “Unless the court is given reasonable grounds for the possibility of a major eruption, it is a socially accepted idea that the safety of a facility will not be undermined even if measures are not in place to prepare for such a scenario.”
The ruling was based on an assessment issued in March by the Secretariat of the Nuclear Regulation Authority that risks to nuclear facilities from a catastrophic volcanic eruption are within a socially acceptable range.
Kenta Tsunasaki, one of the plaintiffs, said he was appalled by the ruling.
“We are again witnessing the exact same attitude toward a massive eruption of a volcano,” he said, referring to the magnitude-9.0 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami that caused the 2011 triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. “The judiciary must have forgotten about the Fukushima disaster.”
Tokyo Electric Power Co., the plant operator, has argued that the scale of the tsunami that struck the nuclear complex could not be foreseen.
Many volcanologists agree that catastrophic eruptions rarely occur.
But Yoshiyuki Tatsumi, professor of volcanology at Kobe University, questioned the court’s dismissal of the possibility of a huge eruption.
“The low occurrence does not assure safety,” he said. “A catastrophic eruption is one of the worst disasters in terms of the degree of danger, which is calculated by multiplying the expected number of victims and the rate of occurrence.”
Tatsumi also said it is difficult to predict when Mount Aso will have a major eruption because its eruption cycle is irregular.
(This article was compiled from reports by Sotaro Hata, Toshio Kawada and Shigeko Segawa.)

 

Reactor can restart in Japan after little risk seen from volcano

Shikoku Electric plans to resume operations at the Ikata plant in October
ikata npp.jpg
The No. 3 unit at the Ikata power plant in Ehime Prefecture
September 25, 2018
OSAKA — A Japanese court ruled Tuesday that a nuclear reactor operated by Shikoku Electric Power could restart, clearing the way for it to join the small handful of nuclear facilities that have resumed operating following a catastrophic earthquake in 2011. 
The Hiroshima High Court overturned Tuesday its own provisional injunction from December, accepting the utility’s claim that a volcano in the vicinity poses little risk.
Following the decision, Shikoku Electric said it will restart the No. 3 unit at its Ikata power plant in Ehime Prefecture on Oct. 27.
High courts have often overruled suspensions handed down by district courts. Examples include the Nos. 3 and 4 units at Kansai Electric Power’s Oi and Takahama plants in Fukui Prefecture. With the Hiroshima high court’s decision, all reactors that had temporary suspension orders on them are able to restart.
The chief issue in the Ikata case was whether a nearby caldera of Mt. Aso in Kumamoto Prefecture is at risk of erupting.
“No proof has been shown of the possibility that a large-scale, catastrophic eruption will occur, and the likelihood that [lava flows] will reach the reactor is sufficiently low,” the court said in its ruling Tuesday.
But the restart could be stopped again by an Oita District Court decision due Friday on another provisional injunction to halt the Ikata unit.
The 890-megawatt No. 3 reactor is one of five across three plants nationwide to restart under standards introduced after the 2011 tsunami. It resumed operations in August 2016, but was halted in October 2017 for routine inspections. The shutdown has cost Shikoku Electric about 30 billion yen ($266 million), the company said.

September 27, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Hiroshima High Court signs off on restart of reactor at Shikoku Electric’s Ikata nuclear power plant

n-ikata-a-20180926-870x624.jpg
Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s Ikata nuclear power plant is seen in Ehime Prefecture.
 
Sept. 25, 2018
HIROSHIMA – The Hiroshima High Court on Tuesday accepted an appeal by Shikoku Electric Power Co. allowing it to restart a halted reactor at its Ikata nuclear power plant in Ehime Prefecture, saying worries over a volcanic eruption damaging the plant are groundless.
The decision is an about-face from its earlier provisional injunction that demanded the utility halt the No. 3 unit at the plant until the end of this month, citing safety risks associated with potential volcanic activity in a nearby prefecture.
The temporary suspension order, issued last December following a request from a local opposition group, marked the first case in which a high court had prohibited operations at a nuclear plant since the 2011 triple meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant led to a nationwide halt of such plants.
Presiding Judge Masayuki Miki said in the ruling, “There is no reason to believe in the possibility of a destructive volcanic eruption during the plant’s operating period and there is only a small chance of volcanic ash and rocks reaching the plant,” which is about 130 kilometers away.
Following the court’s decision, Shikoku Electric said it will reboot the No. 3 reactor on Oct. 27. The unit has been idle for maintenance since October last year.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority, the country’s nuclear watchdog, said, “Drawing on the lessons learned from the nuclear accident at the Fukushima No. 1 plant, we will continue to impose strict regulations based on scientific and technical knowledge.”
Separately, residents in nearby Oita, Kagawa and Yamaguchi prefectures have also been seeking to stop the reactor in pending court cases. The Oita District Court is scheduled to hand down a decision on Friday.
In addition, a request to extend the period of the injunction beyond Sunday has been filed with the Hiroshima District Court.
In the injunction, the high court had said the power company underestimated the risks of heated rocks and volcanic ash reaching the plant if a big eruption occurs at Mount Aso in Kumamoto Prefecture.
That decision constituted a major victory for the nation’s anti-nuclear movement and dealt a blow to the central government and utility firms, which are hoping to bring more reactors back online.
Shikoku Electric claimed in the appeal that it believes there is a “low possibility” of the volcano having a large-scale eruption while the reactor is in operation.
Plaintiffs, however, argued that the resumption of operations at the plant is “unreasonable” because of a “high risk of an accident.”

September 27, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Contaminated water leak found at Ehime Pref. nuke plant

ikata nppp may 9 2018.jpg
In this file photo, the No. 3 reactor, center left, of Shikoku Electric Power Co. Ikata Nuclear Power Station is seen from a Mainichi Shimbun helicopter on March 28, 2017.
IKATA, Ehime — Water containing radioactive materials has leaked from a purification system inside of a stalled nuclear reactor here, Shikoku Electric Power Co. and the Ehime Prefectural Government announced on May 9.
The leak occurred in the auxiliary building of the No. 3 reactor at the Ikata Nuclear Power Station in the town of Ikata, Ehime Prefecture. According to the prefectural government and Shikoku Electric, the coolant water was found to be leaking from the pressure gauge stop valve for the purification system at around 2:10 a.m. on May 9.
The radiation level of the materials in the roughly 130 milliliters of escaped water measured 20 becquerels, far below the standard for filing a report to the central government. The utility and Ehime Prefecture said there is no reported leakage outside of the facility, nor was there any danger posed to employees or the surrounding environment. Regardless, the reason for the leak will be investigated thoroughly.
The No. 3 Reactor at the facility was restarted in August 2016. However, while the rector was undergoing a scheduled inspection in December 2017, a temporary injunction was handed down by the Hiroshima High Court that halted operation at the site.
(Japanese original by Aoi Hanazawa, Matsuyama Bureau)

 

May 10, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Government and utilities shaken by high court challenge to public trust in Japan’s nuclear authority

n-focus-a-20171215-870x536.jpg
Residents who filed an injunction to suspend the restart of a reactor at the Ikata nuclear power plant speak at a news conference Wednesday in Hiroshima.
Wednesday’s ruling by the Hiroshima High Court halting the planned restart of a nuclear reactor in Ehime Prefecture has cast doubt on the judgment of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority — which had approved the restart under stricter post-Fukushima guidelines — shocking the government and utilities across the nation.
The ruling deals a heavy blow to a plan by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration to bring more reactors back online, and is sure to prompt the government and utilities to keep a closer eye on similar cases continuing across the country.
Yuichi Kaido, a lawyer representing local residents, called the ruling the “most important” since the Fukushima nuclear disaster, spurred by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011.
About 40 court cases — including those seeking injunctions — were filed in the wake of the Fukushima meltdown disaster. But while district courts have ordered some reactors stopped, each shutdown decision has been overturned by a high court.
“This is the first time (plaintiffs) have won at the high court level,” Kaido said at a news conference in Tokyo. He said the ruling may signal a turn of the tide.
Wednesday’s ruling was also noteworthy for touching on the risk of volcanic eruption.
“The possibility of heated rock and volcanic ash reaching the reactor cannot be evaluated as small. The location is not suitable” for a nuclear reactor, said presiding Judge Tomoyuki Nonoue in handing down the ruling. The reactor affected is the No. 3 unit at Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s Ikata plant, which is located about 130 kilometers from the caldera of the volcanically active Mount Aso in Kumamoto Prefecture.
“The effect that volcanic ash may have on reactors nationwide is underrated,” Kaido said.
Government officials were quick to attempt to play down the risk. “It’s just a court ruling. The government’s position to seek the restart for reactors approved by the (Nuclear Regulation Authority) remains unchanged,” said a senior trade ministry official.
The central government’s target for power generations calls for 20 percent to 22 percent of the nation’s supply to be contributed by nuclear reactors by 2030.
Nuclear Regulation Authority Chairman Toyoshi Fuketa told a news conference that the high court decision would not influence its ongoing and future safety screenings of other reactors.
“We will just fulfill the role of a regulator,” Fuketa said.
But the reality is that utilities have been seeking to convince municipalities that reactors cleared by the watchdog under the tougher guidelines are safe.
“I’m worried that it could create negative momentum,” said an industry official.
For Shikoku Electric, the blocked restart will mean a spike in fuel costs as it will be forced to rely mainly on non-nuclear power generation.
“While the nuclear reactors are suspended, we will need to rely on thermal power, which means we will need to shoulder a ¥3.5 billion loss per month for fuel,” an executive of the utility said at a news conference on Wednesday.
Other utilities are facing similar constraints. Kyushu Electric Power Co. aims to restart two reactors at its Genkai plant in Saga Prefecture, but local residents have filed an injunction seeking to halt the move. A Kyushu Electric executive said he was “surprised at the unexpected ruling” on the Ikata plant.
Meanwhile, the response of residents in Ehime Prefecture was mixed.
One man voiced concern over the ruling’s potential to damage the local economy. The man, who runs a lodging business, said the town accommodated several hundred nuclear power plant workers a year before the Fukushima disaster.
“Ikata is a town of nuclear power,” he said. “I feel that (the ruling) has left locals behind.”
Another resident, however, welcomed the move as a judicial “breakthrough.”

December 15, 2017 Posted by | Japan | , , , | Leave a comment

For 1st time, a high court rules against nuclear plant operations

13 dec 2017 high court halt Ikata NPP.jpg
Lawyers hold up signs outside the Hiroshima High Court on Dec. 13 proclaiming an injunction had been ordered on operations at the Ikata nuclear power plant.
 
For 1st time, a high court rules against nuclear plant operations
HIROSHIMA–A high court for the first time has banned operations at a nuclear power plant.
The Hiroshima High Court issued the injunction in a verdict Dec. 13 that applies to the No. 3 reactor at the Ikata nuclear power plant in Ikata, Ehime Prefecture, operated by Shikoku Electric Power Co.
In the ruling, the high court concluded there was a chance the Ikata plant could be affected by a pyroclastic flow from Mount Aso if an eruption occurred similar in scale to a massive one 90,000 years ago on the southern island of Kyushu.
A computer simulation by Shikoku Electric of the possible effects from an eruption like the one in ancient times showed there was a possibility of a pyroclastic flow reaching the grounds of the Ikata plant.
The high court concluded that the Ikata plant was located in an inappropriate location and that the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s decision that new safety standards had been met was not rational.
The company suspended operations in October to carry out a periodic inspection. If a judicial decision overturning the Dec. 13 high court ruling is not issued, the Ikata reactor will not be able to resume operations–even if the inspection is completed without problems.
For that reason, the latest ruling could affect the government’s plans to resume operations at other nuclear plants more than six years after the triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
An official with Shikoku Electric Power labeled the court injunction as “extremely regrettable” and lamented the fact that it did not accept the company’s assertion that the plant is safe.
“The verdict is unacceptable,” the official said.
The utility plans to initiate procedures immediately to have the injunction suspended.
The injunction request was made by four residents of Hiroshima and Matsuyama cities. Among the main points of contention before the high court were the rationality of new safety standards approved by the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) in the aftermath of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster; the rationality behind the expected maximum strength of an earthquake for the area; and an evaluation of the effect of volcanic ash on the reactor’s operations.
While district courts have issued injunctions on operations at other plants, higher courts have overturned all those verdicts until now.
For example, the Fukui District Court in April 2015 and the Otsu District Court in March 2016 ordered operations stopped at the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors of the Takahama nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture operated by Kansai Electric Power Co., but those verdicts were later overturned.
 
13 dec hiroshima high court nix ikata npp.jpg
Lawyers hold up banners with messages such as, “Injunction issued,” following a Hiroshima High Court order to suspend operation of the No. 3 reactor at Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s Ikata Nuclear Power Plant, in Hiroshima’s Naka Ward, on Dec. 13, 2017.
High court orders Shikoku Electric to halt Ehime nuclear reactor
HIROSHIMA (Kyodo) — The Hiroshima High Court on Wednesday revoked a lower court decision and ordered the suspension of a nuclear reactor in western Japan, dealing a blow to the government and utilities aiming to bring more reactors back online.
The first high court suspension order in a series of similar injunction requests demanded that plant operator Shikoku Electric Power Co. shut the No. 3 unit of the Ikata power plant in Ehime Prefecture until the end of September next year.
The ruling blocks the planned resumption in January of the unit, which is currently offline for a regular checkup after it was restarted in August 2016.
Shikoku Electric said the decision is “unacceptable” and plans to file an appeal against it.
The court found it was irrational that the Nuclear Regulation Authority judged that the potential risks associated with a volcanic eruption would not breach the stricter regulations introduced following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis.
“Specific threats to the lives and health of residents are anticipated,” the court said.
The latest decision follows the ruling by the Otsu District Court in March 2016 that ordered Kansai Electric Power Co. to suspend two reactivated nuclear reactors at the Takahama plant. The district court decision was later overturned by the Osaka High Court.
The government is looking to produce 20 to 22 percent of the country’s electricity supply with nuclear power by 2030 after the Fukushima nuclear crisis led to a nationwide halt of nuclear plants.
The focal points of the latest decision included whether the estimate by the plant operator of the potential size of an earthquake, a key factor in a reactor’s quake-resistance design, was reasonable, and whether safety screening conducted under the new regulations was credible.
The plaintiffs claimed that in calculating the size of a potential earthquake, the utility underestimated the fact that the reactor lies above the epicenter of an anticipated Nankai Trough mega-quake and that it is located near a geological fault.
They added that the post-Fukushima regulations cannot ensure safety and major damage could occur at the time of an accident or disaster because they were compiled without thoroughly determining the cause of the 2011 disaster.
But Shikoku Electric said that it has ensured safety and there is no danger.
Hiroyuki Kawai, the lawyer representing the plaintiffs said, “Our plea was understood. We could protect the Seto Inland Sea. It is our victory.”
The plaintiffs had said that if the Ikata plant, which faces the Seto Inland Sea, was to be severely damaged, nuclear substances could spread and contaminate the sea.
In March, the Hiroshima District Court had found that the new regulations and Shikoku Electric’s estimates of a possible earthquake and tsunami were reasonable.
The district court had turned down the request to halt the reactor, saying, “There is no specific risk that residents will suffer severe damage due to radioactive exposure associated with an accident.”
Following the checkup, Shikoku Electric was expected to bring the reactor back online on Jan. 22.
The plaintiffs were four residents from Matsuyama in Ehime and Hiroshima on the other side of the Seto Inland Sea. Similar injunction demands have been contested at the Takamatsu High Court, the Oita District Court and the Iwakuni branch of the Yamaguchi District Court.
 
 
Ikata power plant's No.2 reactor, right, and No. 3 reactor
Ikata power plant’s No.2 reactor, right, and No. 3 reactor in Ehime prefecture
Japan’s high court orders suspension of Ehime nuclear reactor
HIROSHIMA (Kyodo) —  The Hiroshima High Court on Wednesday revoked a lower court decision and ordered the suspension of a nuclear reactor at the Ikata power plant in Ehime Prefecture, western Japan.
It is the first high court decision on a series of injunction demands filed with four district courts seeking to halt the No. 3 reactor at the plant, which was restarted in August 2016 but is now offline for a regular checkup.
The focal points of the decision included whether the estimate by the plant operator Shikoku Electric Power Co. of the potential size of a quake, a key factor in a reactor’s quake-resistance design, was reasonable, and whether safety screening conducted under stricter regulations set after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster was credible.
Risks predicted in the event of nuclear accidents and natural disasters such as a volcanic eruption were also contested.
The plaintiffs claimed that in calculating the size of a potential earthquake, the utility underestimated the fact that the reactor lies above the epicenter of an anticipated Nankai Trough mega-quake and that it is located near a geologic fault.
They added that the post-Fukushima regulations cannot ensure safety and major damage could occur at the time of an accident or disaster because they were compiled without thoroughly determining the cause of the 2011 disaster.
But Shikoku Electric said that it has ensured safety and there is no danger.
In March, the Hiroshima District Court had found that the new regulations set by the Nuclear Regulation Authority and Shikoku Electric’s estimates of a possible earthquake and tsunami were reasonable.
The district court had turned down the request to halt the reactor, saying, “There is no specific risk that residents will suffer severe damage due to radioactive exposure associated with an accident.”
Following the checkup, Shikoku Electric was expected to bring the reactor back online on Jan. 22 and resume operations on Feb. 20.
No. 3 reactor will stay offline as key safety issues remain contested
The plaintiffs were four residents from Matsuyama in Ehime and Hiroshima on the other side of the Seto Inland Sea. Similar injunction demands have been contested at the Takamatsu High Court, the Oita District Court and the Iwakuni branch of the Yamaguchi District Court.
 
ikata npp.jpg
A lawyer representing residents who filed an injunction to suspend reactor operations at Ikata nuclear power plant speaks in front of Hiroshima High Court on Wednesday, after the court revoked a lower court decision and ordered suspension of the No. 3 reactor
Hiroshima High Court orders suspension of Ikata nuclear reactor in Ehime Prefecture, revoking district court ruling
HIROSHIMA – The Hiroshima High Court on Wednesday revoked a lower court decision and ordered the suspension of a nuclear reactor at Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s Ikata power plant in Ehime Prefecture, dealing a blow to the government and utilities that are aiming to bring more reactors back online.
The high court suspension order — the first in a series of similar injunctions — mandates that the plant operator shutter the No. 3 unit at the Ikata power plant until the end of September next year.
The ruling blocks the planned resumption in January of the unit, which is currently offline for regular checks after it was restarted in August 2016.
Shikoku Electric said the court’s decision is “unacceptable” and plans to file an appeal.
The court questioned a decision by the Nuclear Regulation Authority that potential risks associated with volcanic eruptions would not breach the stricter regulations introduced following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis.
“Specific threats to the lives and health of residents are anticipated,” the court said.
The latest decision follows a ruling by Otsu District Court in March 2016 that ordered Kansai Electric Power Co. to suspend two reactivated nuclear reactors at its Takahama plant. The district court decision was later overturned by the Osaka High Court.
The Fukushima nuclear crisis led to a nationwide halt of nuclear plants, but the government is looking to produce 20 to 22 percent of the country’s electricity supply using nuclear power by 2030.
The focal points of Hiroshima High Court’s decision Wednesday included whether estimates by the plant operator, Shikoku Electric Power Co., of the potential size of possible earthquakes, were reasonable, and whether safety screening conducted under stricter regulations set after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster was credible.
Risks predicted in the event of a nuclear accident or natural disasters such as a volcanic eruptions were also contested.
The plaintiffs claimed that in calculating the size of a potential earthquake, the utility had underestimated the fact that the reactor lies above the epicenter of an anticipated Nankai Trough mega-quake, and that it is located near a geologic fault.
They added that the post-Fukushima regulations cannot ensure safety, and that major damage could occur at the time of an accident or disaster because the regulations were compiled without thoroughly determining the cause of the 2011 disaster.
But Shikoku Electric maintains that it has ensured safety and that there is no danger.
Hiroyuki Kawai, the lawyer representing the plaintiffs said, “Our plea was understood. We could protect the Seto Inland Sea. It is our victory.”
The plaintiffs had said that if the Ikata plant, which faces the Seto Inland Sea, was to be severely damaged, nuclear substances could spread and contaminate waters in the area.
In March, the Hiroshima District Court found that the new regulations set by the Nuclear Regulation Authority and Shikoku Electric’s estimates of a possible earthquake and tsunami were reasonable.
The district court had turned down the request to halt the reactor, saying, “There is no specific risk that residents will suffer severe damage due to radioactive exposure associated with an accident.”
Following the checks, Shikoku Electric had been expected to bring the reactor back online on Jan. 22 and resume operations on Feb. 20.
The plaintiffs were four residents from Matsuyama in Ehime and Hiroshima, located on the opposite side of the Seto Inland Sea to the nuclear plant. Similar injunctions have been contested at the Takamatsu High Court, Oita District Court and the Iwakuni branch of Yamaguchi District Court.

December 14, 2017 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Anti-radiation domes to be readied in Ehime near power plant

Better than none, but how long do people have to stay in those temporary?
But even better would be to stop nuke.
Nobody can ever be fully protected when a nuclear reactor goes wrong, and expect it soon or later to go wrong, and most certainly in a country with many volcanos and earthquakes as Japan.
Nuclear safety is an oxymoron for the morons who believe it.
special shelters ikata ehime 6 nov 2017.jpg
Clean air domes for evacuees to be introduced in Ikata, Ehime Prefecture, in the event of a nuclear disaster
IKATA, Ehime Prefecture–A nuclear power plant operator is readying folding domes here to provide shelter for up to 600 evacuees in the event of a nuclear accident.
Shikoku Electric Power Co. said Oct. 24 that it plans to install eight clean air domes at Ikata’s three evacuation centers west of the town’s nuclear power plant to protect residents from radiation.
The special shelters are expected to cost a total of 200 million yen ($1.76 million) and will be introduced by June next year.
It will be the first time for a power company to set up evacuation clean air domes in municipalities that are home to nuclear power plants, according to Shikoku Electric, although municipalities and other parties in Fukui Prefecture own such domes themselves.
The Ikata plant is situated at the root of the Sadamisaki Peninsula, which stretches east to west. Because 4,700 people live to the west of the plant, a big challenge is how to evacuate them when roads are blocked in a disaster.
In April, Shikoku Electric started considering introducing air domes to protect evacuees at temporary shelters in Ikata and began talks with Ehime Prefecture and Ikata town in late August to discuss the domes’ installation locations and total capacity as well as other topics.
The planned air domes will be made of polyester and measure 10 meters wide, 4 meters high, and 15 to 25 meters long. They will be equipped with air cleaning units that can remove more than 99 percent of radioactive materials such as cesium and iodine.
As evacuees are expected to stay in the domes for a week, they will also be furnished with toilets.
The domes can be folded into small sheets when stored, and four people can set one up in an hour, according to Shikoku Electric officials.
While three domes with a total capacity of 250 people will be introduced at the Seto Sogo gymnasium, three domes for 250 people and two domes for 100 people will also be deployed to the Misaki Sogo gymnasium and the gymnasium for Misaki elementary and junior high schools, respectively.
Those anti-radiation domes are to be set up inside the gymnasium buildings at the time of a nuclear crisis.
Maintenance and installation of the domes will be conducted by Shikoku Electric, whereas water, food and daily commodities for evacuees will be supplied by the town government.
Although the operations of the No. 2 reactor at the Ikata plant have been suspended, Koichi Tamagawa, an executive vice president of Shikoku Electric who is in charge of the Nuclear Power Division, on Oct. 24 reaffirmed the company’s intention to decide whether to restart the reactor by the end of this fiscal year.

November 6, 2017 Posted by | Japan | | Leave a comment

Typhoon Lan Targets Never-Ending Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Site Area With High Waves, Wind, Rains

1.jpgTyphoon Lan and Japan Nuclear Power Stations.

 
 
“Powerful typhoon drenches Japan, soaks voters as they trudge to polls
Posted:Sun, 22 Oct 2017 03:39:46 -0400
TOKYO (Reuters) – Tens of thousands across Japan were advised to evacuate, hundreds of flights were canceled and rail services disrupted as heavy rain and wind lashed a wide swathe of Japan on Sunday, a national election day, as a powerful typhoon neared“. http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/si-9SOj0Ex4/powerful-typhoon-drenches-japan-soaks-voters-as-they-trudge-to-polls-idUSKBN1CR02N
 
Apparently the Fukushima area may get 10 meters (32 ft) waves.
 
2
3
 
Typhoon Lan offshore: “MAXIMUM SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT AT 220000Z IS 41 FEET” http://www.usno.navy.mil/NOOC/nmfc-ph/RSS/jtwc/warnings/wp2517web.txt
 
Sendai Nuclear Power Station and Ikata are apparently back in operation: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_Japan. Hamaoka and others not operating almost certainly have spent fuel still onsite, which still requires energy for cooling.
 
5
4
 
Source: Japan Meteorological Agency website
 

 

October 22, 2017 Posted by | Japan | , , , | Leave a comment

Japan nuclear reactor operations: Shikoku shuts Ikata No.3

 TOKYO, Oct 3 (Reuters) - Shikoku Electric Power Co
said it shut its Ikata No. 3 reactor on Tuesday for planned
maintenance.
    The company expects the 890-megawatt No.3 reactor to resume
power generation from around Jan. 22, with commercial operations
likely to resume around Feb. 20, it said.
    Many of Japan's reactors are still going through a
relicensing process following the 2011 Fukushima disaster, the
world's worst since Chernobyl in 1986, which highlighted
regulatory and operational failings at nuclear utilities. 
    The restart process has been protracted as all of the
country's reactors were eventually idled. Between September 2013
and August 2015 Japan had no nuclear plants in operation.
    Japan's nine regional power utilities and a wholesaler,
Japan Atomic Power Co, have 42 nuclear reactors for commercial
use, with a total generating capacity of 41.482 gigawatts. 
    The shutdown of the Ikata No.3 reactor will bring the number
of the nation's reactors that are online down to four, with a
combined capacity of 3.52 gigawatts, or 8.5 percent of the
country's total nuclear capacity, according to Reuters
calculations.
    The following table shows the status of Japan's nuclear
power plants. 

Screenshot from 2017-10-03 19-48-25
    
http://af.reuters.com/article/commoditiesNews/idAFL4N1MA1OT

October 5, 2017 Posted by | Japan | | Leave a comment

No joke: Despite the evidence, nuclear power declared safe!

ikata 30 sept 2017.pngA touch-panel screen at a facility in Ikata explains that the nuclear power plant in the town was built to withstand strong earthquakes.

 

IKATA, Ehime Prefecture–It’s as if the 2011 nuclear disaster in Japan never happened.

A public relations facility here that was set up to publicize the safety of the Ikata nuclear power plant operated by Shikoku Electric Power Co. still insists that nuclear plants can withstand a tsunami of any height.

Like the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant that went into triple meltdown, the Ikata facility faces the coast. A magnitude-9.0 earthquake on March 11, 2011, triggered tsunami that put the Fukushima facility out of action.

More than six years after that catastrophic event, the Ehime prefectural government is finally moving to revise the information designed to ease fears about a nuclear accident.

The contents on display will be updated before the end of the fiscal year because, as one prefectural government official put it, “Some of the information does not square with the current situation.”

The facility is located in the Minatoura district of Ikata about four kilometers east of the Ikata nuclear plant. It was established in 1982 by Ehime prefectural authorities to remove concerns the public may have about nuclear power generation.

It is operated by an organization that survives on funding from Shikoku Electric, the Ehime prefectural government and the Ikata town government.

In the last fiscal year, the facility had 1,761 visitors, including elementary school students who live nearby.

Near the entrance to the facility is a touch-panel screen where visitors can learn about nuclear power plants in a quiz format.

One question asks, “What would happen to a nuclear power plant if a large earthquake should strike?”

The three alternatives to choose from are: 1) Continue to generate power; 2) The reactor automatically stops to prevent any form of accident; and 3) It would be destroyed if a large earthquake struck.

The second choice is considered the correct answer.

The monitor also offers this reassurance: “(The nuclear plant) is a sturdy building that would not budge an inch in an earthquake, typhoon or tsunami.”

Another entry states that “it was designed with the largest possible quake in mind.”

Another question asks, “Would a nuclear power plant explode like a nuclear bomb?”

Again, there are three choices: 1) It would explode if used in a wrong way; 2) It would never explode; and 3) Nuclear reactors might explode once it ages.

The correct answer is again the second choice.

In fact, after the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami of March 2011, reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 plant were severely damaged by hydrogen explosions caused by core meltdowns after cooling functions were lost when power to the plant was lost.

About a year ago, facility operators have attached a sign to the touch-panel screen that says, “We are in the process of preparing a revision because some of the wording differs from the current situation.”

However, no explanation is offered to show what sections differ from reality.

A prefectural government official in charge of nuclear power safety measures said, “There is some accurate information so we decided it was preferable that some of it was viewed.”

But, the official added that the display would be revised along with improvements in other equipment. The cost of about 500,000 yen ($4,400) would be paid for from tax subsidies obtained through laws covering power generation.

After the Fukushima nuclear accident, a new display was added to show the safety measures being taken at the Ikata plant. There is also a video shown at the facility which explains there has been no noticeable spike in cancer rates or hereditary illness caused by radiation levels under 100 millisieverts.

http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201709300035.html

October 3, 2017 Posted by | Japan | | Leave a comment

6.6 Magnitude Earthquake in Western Japan

 

ljlmkùlmùmjlmmùùù.jpg

 

Since the strong earthquake today at 2:07 p.m. in Tottori, of 6.6 magnitude and 6 intensity that shook half of Japan, the earth continues to shake with an impressive number of aftershocks. Officials at the Meteorological Agency say seismic activity continues in Tottori and are asking people to be prepared and take precautions against another possible earthquake.

On this coast of West Japan lies the largest concentration of nuclear power plants in the world. Though stopped, they are full of potentially very dangerous spent nuclear fuel. The epicenter of this earthquake was at 76km from the Shimane nuclear power plant. Of course, no damages say the Authorities, as usual…

14718850_1154696694608715_2380428746677845957_n

 

nuke plants oct 2016.jpg

 

Strong quake in western Japan

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.6 struck Tottori Prefecture in western Japan on Friday afternoon. The Japan Meteorological Agency says there is no tsunami theat.
The jolt registered 6 minus on the Japanese seismic scale of 0 to 7 in central Tottori. The focus was 10 kilometers deep in the prefecture.
There are some reports of injuries and houses collapsing.
About 30,000 households in the prefecture are without power.
The tremors have disrupted transportation.
Local airports have cancelled flights.
Some bullet train services in central Japan are suspended. Parts of highways have been closed to check for damage.
Officials at the nearby Shimane nuclear power plant say there are no irregularities. The plant was off-line at the time of the quake.

http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20161021_27/

hkjlmkm.jpg

M6.6 quake strikes western Japan, no tsunami warning issued

A powerful earthquake struck Tottori Prefecture and surrounding areas shortly after 2 p.m. on Oct. 21, the Japan Meteorological Agency said. No tsunami warning was issued.

The 2:07 p.m. quake, which had an estimated magnitude of 6.6, measured a lower 6 on the 7-point Japanese seismic intensity scale in some parts of the Tottori Prefecture city of Kurayoshi, the town of Yurihama and the town of Hokuei, the agency said. It measured an upper 5 in parts of the city of Tottori, as well as in parts of neighboring Okayama Prefecture.

Reports said that several homes in Yurihama had collapsed. The Tottori Prefectural Government is in the process of confirming the information. The quake caused a blackout affecting nearly 32,000 households in Tottori Prefecture, Chugoku Electric Power Co. reported.

Firefighters in Tottori said that a female employee at a supermarket restaurant was taken to hospital with burns to her legs after an accident with hot oil when the quake struck. Elevators also stopped in the quake and there were reports that at least one person had been trapped.

Broken windows were reported over a wide area of Kurayoshi. A 53-year-old architect in the city, Katsunori Choda, said he was about to get in a vehicle when the ground started shaking, and pedestrians crouched on the ground to balance themselves. Soon afterward there was a blackout. Ambulance sirens could be heard and tiles fell from the roofs of old homes.

“I’d never felt an earthquake this big before,” the architect said. “There is a lot of old town scenery in the area and I’m worried about damage.”

Earthquake sounds could still be heard 30 minutes after the quake and aftershocks were reportedly continuing. The earthquake struck at an estimated depth of 10 kilometers, the meteorological agency said.

Services on the Sanyo Shinkansen bullet train were suspended between Shin-Osaka and Hakata stations following the quake, but resumed at 2:27 p.m., West Japan Railway Co. announced.

http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20161021/p2g/00m/0dm/062000c

n-quakenew-b-20161022-870x550.jpg

This aerial photo shows broken grave markers and collapsed walls at a cemetery in Kurayoshi, Tottori Prefecture, following a strong earthquake that shook the area Friday.

Homes damaged, power cut after strong quake rattles parts of western Honshu

A powerful earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.6 shook parts of western Honshu early Friday afternoon, damaging homes and roads and cutting power to almost 40,000 households.

The Meteorological Agency said the earthquake occurred at 2:07 p.m. in central Tottori Prefecture, about 700 km west of Tokyo, at a depth of 10 km. It was followed by a weaker aftershock about 30 minutes later.

The agency said there was no danger of a tsunami from the inland temblor.

Two houses collapsed in the town of Hokuei, Tottori Prefecture, according to the local fire department. Roads were cracked and roof tiles laid strewn in the town.

In Kurayoshi in the prefecture, ATMs at some local banks temporarily went offline due to a power outage.

All up, the blackout affected nearly 40,000 households in Tottori Prefecture, according to Chugoku Electric Power Co.

Okayama City Fire Department said a woman in her 70s was taken to hospital after she fell and broke her right leg. Five people are reported to have been injured in Tottori Prefecture.

West Japan Railway Co. temporarily suspended all services on the Sanyo Shinkansen Line between Shin-Osaka and Hakata stations.

The quake registered lower 6 on the Japanese seismic scale of 7 in parts of Tottori Prefecture, and upper 5 in a wide area in Tottori and Okayama prefectures, according to the agency.

No abnormalities were detected at the Shimane nuclear plant, which is currently off-line, in nearby Shimane Prefecture, according to the utility.

Okayama airport closed its runway to check its safety, airport officials said.

According to local officials a house in the town of Yurihama, in central Tottori Prefecture, was destroyed, and a number of dwellings in other parts of the prefecture suffered damage

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/10/21/national/strong-earthquake-rattles-western-honshu-shinkansen-train-services-disrupted/#.WAn2siTKO-d

n-JISHIN-large570.jpg

UPDATE: Quake rattles buildings in Tottori; 6 injured

Tottori Prefecture in western Japan was struck by a series of major earthquakes on Oct. 21, causing structural damage to some buildings and homes and at least six injuries.

A quake measuring lower 6 on the Japanese intensity scale of 7 was recorded at 2:07 p.m.

The focus was about 10 kilometers underground, and the temblor had an estimated magnitude of 6.6.

Shaking was felt in a wide area of western Japan and as far as the Kanto and Kyushu regions.

Japan Meteorological Agency officials urged caution because there was a possibility of another quake measuring lower 6 in intensity striking over the next week in areas where the shaking was particularly strong.

Among the buildings damaged was the Kurayoshi city government building. Government workers evacuated as the building has been declared off-limits.

Homes in Yurihama were also heavily damaged, according to Tottori prefectural officials.

One individual suffered burns at a shopping center in Tottori city while a woman in her 70s in Okayama city, south of Tottori, fell and broke her leg.

Meanwhile, officials of Chugoku Electric Power Co. said about 31,900 households in the prefecture suffered a blackout after the quake struck, centered mainly on Kurayoshi.

However, the quake did not affect the two reactors at the Shimane nuclear power plant in the neighboring prefecture. Both reactors were not operating when the temblor struck.

Various stretches of expressways were closed to traffic.

Bullet train services between Shin-Osaka and Hakata stations operated by West Japan Railway Co. were stopped for about 20 minutes immediately after the quake. Service on the Tokaido Shinkansen line was also temporarily suspended between Shin-Osaka and Toyohashi in Aichi Prefecture.

http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201610210040.html

n-quake-a-20161022.jpg

 

hijkp.jpg

 

 

October 21, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Industry minister Seko inspects Ikata nuclear plant

Ikata Nuclear Power Plant is located in Ehime Prefecture in Shikoku, across from the Bungo Channel that separates Kyushu and Shikoku.

ikata

Ikata Nuclear Power Plant with pressurized water reactors by Mitsubishi Heavy Electric sits extremely close to Japan’s Median Tectonic Line, the largest fault in Japan, part of which is active.

tectonic_map_of_southwest_japan

 

ikata-npp-400-nra

 

MATSUYAMA (Kyodo) — Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Hiroshige Seko on Saturday inspected a recently restarted reactor at the Ikata nuclear power plant in western Japan to assess the safety measures there.

Seko visited an observation deck that overlooks the entire complex of Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s plant in Ehime Prefecture, as well as a facility to store spent nuclear fuel in the radiation-controlled area and other locations.

Seko was briefed on a system to provide electricity in the event of earthquakes and other emergencies by Seizo Masuda, the chief of the plant, and expressed satisfaction at the multiple backups available.

The No. 3 reactor at the Ikata plant was reactivated on Aug. 12, having cleared a set of safety requirements imposed in the wake of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant disaster in 2011.

The 890-megawatt reactor shifted to commercial operation on Sept. 7 following final checks by the Nuclear Regulation Authority. The unit had not operated since it was taken off-line in April 2011 for regular checks.

Some snags occurred around the time of its reactivation, including a problem with a pump for the reactor’s primary cooling water and a leakage in a drainage pipe in related equipment.

The reactor is currently the sole unit in operation in Japan running on plutonium-uranium mixed oxide fuel, which contains plutonium extracted from reprocessing spent fuel.

http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20161015/p2g/00m/0dm/070000c

October 15, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Active Volcanoes Endanger Japan’s Operating Nuclear Power Stations: Mount Aso Awakened Explosively; Sakurajima Already Awake

Japan’s Mount Aso volcano erupted explosively on Saturday, 8 Oct., 2016, and volcanic “ash was falling as far as 320 km (200 miles) away, … Kyushu Electric Power Co said the eruption had no impact on its Sendai nuclear plant, which is about 160 km (100 miles) south of Mount Aso“(Reuters, 8 Oct. 2016). Sendai nuclear power station has two reactors online. The other nuclear power station online is Ikata, with one reactor operating. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_Japan

1

 

Volcano locations exported from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_volcanoes_in_Japan

With a change in wind direction ashfall from Mount Aso and/or Sakurajima could endanger Japan’s operating reactors. As can be seen on the map, Ikata Nuclear Power Station is closer to Mount Aso, and Sakurajima to Sendai Nuclear Power Station. Ash plume forecasts for both appear at the bottom of this post.

Disruptions due to a major volcanic eruption, as well as ashfall could lead to nuclear meltdown: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2015/08/15/official-volcano-evacuation-warning-near-re-opened-nuclear-reactors-in-japan-volcanic-ashfall-could-lead-to-meltdown-spent-fuel-pool-collapse/

https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/08/27/japan-governor-asks-for-halt-of-sendai-nuclear-reactors/

Japan’s Mount Aso volcano erupts, no injuries reported
Posted:Sat, 08 Oct 2016 07:41:33 -0400
TOKYO (Reuters) – Mount Aso, a volcano on Japan’s main southern island of Kyushu, erupted early on Saturday, Japan’s Meteorological Agency said, spewing volcanic ash 11,000 meters (7 miles) into the sky. http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/DLFdmJfALl4/us-japan-volcano-idUSKCN12804E

“Mount Aso, a volcano on Japan’s Kyushu island, has been erupting sporadically for decades. Smithsonian’s Global Volcanism Program lists 38 separate eruptions since 1950, with the most recent beginning on December 8, 2014. All of these eruptions have occurred at Naka-dake, a cinder cone located within Aso’s massive caldera.”

2

ERUPTION AT MOUNT ASO Credit: NASA Earth Observatory by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from USGS. Caption by Adam Voiland. Date: January 13, 2015 Visualization Date: January 15, 2015
http://visibleearth.nasa.gov/view.php?id=85090

3

http://www.jma.go.jp/en/volcano/

4

Asosan
Volcanic Ash Fall Forecast (Scheduled)
Issued at 05:00 JST, 09 October 2016 Japan Meteorological Agency: http://www.jma.go.jp/en/ashfall/scheduled_503.html

5

6

Sakurajima Aug 19 2010 NASA

7.jpeg

Sakurajima
Volcanic Ash Fall Forecast (Scheduled)
Issued at 05:00 JST, 09 October 2016 Japan Meteorological Agency
http://www.jma.go.jp/en/ashfall/scheduled_506.html

Source :

https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/10/09/active-volcanos-endanger-japans-operating-nuclear-power-stations-mount-aso-awakened-explosively-sakurajima-already-awake/

October 11, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment