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Undersea survey for new nuke plant deferred due to protests in western Japan

When will the Japanese government and big utilities ever learn? Aren’t three meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi enough to teach them that there is NO future in building new nukes!

fghgjkkm.jpgA planned construction site for the Kaminoseki nuclear power station is seen in the foreground, while Iwaishima Island lies in the background, in the town of Kaminoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, on May 29, 2019.

November 15, 2019

SHUNAN, Yamaguchi — An undersea boring survey for the construction of a nuclear power plant on a planned land reclamation site off Kaminoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, has been deferred due to protests by local residents opposing the project.

Chugoku Electric Power Co. had originally planned to start the survey on Nov. 14 in waters off Kaminoseki in western Japan, and complete it by Jan. 30 next year. However, daily protests by anti-nuclear power residents aboard fishing boats and inclement weather had delayed measurements and other preparation work, prompting the power company to postpone the survey.

The Hiroshima-based utility intends to study whether there are active faults in the area by drilling the seabed to a depth of about 60 meters. The survey falls under preparations for safety screening accompanying construction of the Kaminoseki nuclear plant under new regulatory standards for nuclear complexes introduced in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. The Yamaguchi Prefectural Government had granted permission for the boring survey on Oct. 31.

The power company plans to start boring after ensuring safety in the area. Residents, meanwhile, say they will continue their protests.


November 25, 2019 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

New Japanese nuclear power plant project given go ahead by local authorities


A man holds a flag with a radioactive hazard symbol during No Nukes Day, a protest calling for a nuclear-free future, in Yoyogi park in Tokyo, Japan.

Yamaguchi prefecture in Japan has renewed a landfill license for construction of a new nuclear power plant. The license was halted after the Fukushima disaster. The renewal comes amid heated debate on whether Japan needs new reactors at all.

The license to reclaim land for a new nuclear plant was renewed for the Chugoku Electric Power Co. by the prefectural government on Wednesday, Kyodo news agency reports.

The plant once planned to be constructed in the coastal town of Kaminoseki is positioned “within the country’s energy policy,” the local government said.

Originally, the two-reactor Kaminoseki nuclear complex on an island in the Seto Inland Sea was granted the landfill license in October 2008. The Fukushima crisis brought the construction to a halt at an early landfill work stage, while the license expired in 2012 and was not prolonged, as the former Yamaguchi Governor Shigetaro Yamamoto said the local authorities wanted to “examine the issue appropriately,” but did not make a decision, citing “special circumstances after the nuclear accident.”

Now the landfill license for Kaminoseki nuclear complex has been extended until July 6, 2019, specifically stipulating, though, that the landfill work cannot start until the company presents exact schedule of when the plant facilities are going to be built.

As of now, Chugoku Electric is not ready to elaborate on exact dates when construction will begin, company Vice-President Akira Sakotani said the same day the license was extended.

We will seriously take to heart the request [by the prefectural government] and carefully consider [our response],” he said.

When the construction of the Kaminoseki nuclear complex began, it was slowed down by protests of the local anti-nuclear energy activists. The activists are expected to go on with their protests now, that the license has been extended.

Anti-nuclear sentiment in Japan have been strong ever since the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster, but Japan’s huge nuclear energy industry has been stagnating amidst uncertainty for five years now.

Official Tokyo is already pushing for restoring operations of those existing reactors that have successfully met the new post-Fukushima safety requirements.

Just on Wednesday, the No. 3 reactor of Mihama plant in Fukui Prefecture, operated by Kansai Electric Power Co. successfully passed the state safety assessment, becoming yet another nuclear power unit confirmed for safe operations under new regulations.

August 5, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment