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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 July 24 - 30  > All nuclear reactors in Fukushima will be decommissioned
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2019 July 24 - 30 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

All nuclear reactors in Fukushima will be decommissioned

July 25, 2019
TEPCO on July 24 officially announced that it will close down all four reactors at its Fukushima Daini nuclear power plant (Naraha Town, Tomioka Town) and informed the Fukushima governor of a plan to build an on-site spent fuel storage facility.

Governor Uchibori Masao said that the decision is an important step toward the removal of all reactors from the prefecture, and that he will discuss the construction of a storage facility with the mayors of Naraha and Tomioka.

Akahata on July 25 stated that it sees TEPCO's official decommissioning decision as a matter of course, criticizing its slow decision-making because the utility announced its decommissioning intention more than one year ago.

The Fukushima prefectural assembly and all municipalities in Fukushima have been demanding that all ten reactors (6 at Fukushima Daiichi, 4 at Fukushima Daini) be shut down and decommissioned. Since October 2011, the prefectural assembly has repeatedly approved or adopted petitions or resolutions seeking the dismantling of all ten reactors.

However, the central government has left it up to TEPCO whether to decommission the reactors.

Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Councilors Iwabuchi Tomo in the Diet in March of this year criticized this stance of the Abe government and demanded that a political decision to decommission be made.

The central government is not involved in the decommissioning of nuclear reactors and considers nuclear power generation to be an important base-load power source and therefore promotes the use of nuclear energy.

The Abe government in its basic energy plan states that it will do everything possible to increase the share of electricity generated by nuclear power stations to 20-22% of the total by 2030 from the 3% generated in 2017 following the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns. In accordance with this plan, TEPCO is looking to reactivate the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant (Niigata Pref.) and to open a new Higashidori plant (Aomori Pref.)

TEPCO and the Abe government should do everything possible to bring the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi plant under stable control and decommission it safely. They should also take steps toward achieving a Japan without nuclear energy.

Past related articles:
> Abe gov’t energy plan disregards domestic and global trend toward departure from nuclear power generation [July 4, 2018]
> TEPCO decides to close down Fukushima Daini NPP [June 18, 2018]
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