Chairman of the Federation of Electric Power Companies in Japan wants new government to review zero nuclear power policy

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On Monday, Makoto Yagi, chairman of the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan, demanded that the new LDP-led government review the nation’s zero nuclear dependence policy, arguing that the change of ruling party should mark a change in nuclear policy.  Yagi, who is also Kansai Electric’s Chief Executive Officer, the utility which operates the only two nuclear reactors currently producing electricity in Japan, stated bluntly that there were too many challenges to overcome in achieving the goal, implying that it was unrealistic.

“We want the new government to review the plan and achieve a more realistic energy policy,” Yagi added, emphasizing the importance of nuclear power generation in Japan’s energy mix.

The utilities see the result of Japan’s recent election as a significant step forward in restarting the nation’s nuclear reactors, including TEPCO’s Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant.  Chairman of the LDP general council Hiroyuki Hosoda said on Nov. 27 that Japan must restart its nuclear reactors quickly.  According to Bloomberg, the price of uranium has fallen 33% to $45.50 on Dec. 14 from $67.50 before the Japanese nuclear crisis, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The FERP has recently come under international criticism after it was found that they were providing financial support to Japanese health physics experts and ICRP members in charge of establishing radiation protection guidelines in Japan.  A parliamentary investigation found that utilities have repeatedly tried to push Japanese ICRP members toward a lenient standard on radiation from as far back as 2007.

Internal records at the Federation of Electric Power Companies obtained by the investigative committee showed officials rejoicing over how their views were getting reflected in ICRP Japan statements.  The Federation declined comment on the scandal.

Source: JiJi Press

Source: Businessweek

Source: Laboratory Equipment

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