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HOME  > Past issues  > 2015 April 15 - 21  > Abe gov’t discounts court order to block restart of Takahama NPP
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2015 April 15 - 21 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Abe gov’t discounts court order to block restart of Takahama NPP

April 16, 2015
Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide said on April 14 that the government will go ahead with the restart of two reactors at the Takahama Nuclear Power Plant in defiance of a court injunction against reactivation.

Earlier in the day, the Fukui District Court gave a decision that bars the Kansai Electric Power Company from restarting the No.3 and No.4 reactors at its Takahama plant in Fukui Prefecture. Suga said at a press conference that the two reactors have met the new safety standards set by the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) and that the central government is going to carry out the necessary procedures to have the reactors back online.

The court ruling criticized the NRA’s safety standards as “too lax”. It noted that those standards are scientifically “irrational” and that even if a nuclear power facility fulfills the requirements, it will not ensure the safety of the facility.

The government spokesman was unable to refute this ruling, just repeating that the watchdog’s standards are supposedly “the most rigorous in the world”.

The administration of Prime Minister Abe Shinzo prefers to insist that it will work to “protect people’s lives” and that Japan is a “law-governed state”. Suga’s remarks, however, prove that the Abe government even ignores judicial decisions and works to protect the interests of nuclear power-related businesses, not the interests of the general public.

Inada Tomomi, chair of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party Policy Research Council (also a lawmaker elected from a constituency in Fukui Prefecture), justified Suga’s comment by saying that the LDP had promised in last December’s general election campaign to restart the suspended operations of atomic reactors.

LDP Acting Secretary-General Hosoda Hiroyuki said to reporters that the district court judgment is “inappropriate”.

Past related article:
> NRA says Takahama NPP meets new safety standards [February 13, 2015]
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