Japan – Last KEPCO nuclear reactor to be shutdown Monday
Laaska News Feb. 20, 2012
The last nuclear reactor operated by Kansai Electric Power Company is to be shut down later on Monday for regular inspections.
KEPCO says it will begin shutting down the No. 3 reactor at Takahama nuclear plant in Fukui, central Japan, late on Monday afternoon. The work is scheduled to be completed early Tuesday morning.
With this shutdown, only 2 of Japan’s 54 nuclear reactors will remain online, but they too will be shut down by late April.
As all of KEPCO’s 11 reactors will be offline starting Tuesday, the utility has called on households and firms in the region to reduce their use of power by 10 percent from the year before. The measure will remain in place until March 23rd.
Japan’s nuclear safety agency last week endorsed the results of stress tests on 2 reactors at the Ohi nuclear plant in Fukui, effectively giving its go-ahead to restart the suspended reactors.
The Japanese government will ultimately decide on whether to approve the resumption of operations, but it also needs the approval of the local governments hosting the reactors.
The governments of Fukui Prefecture and Ohi Town say the results of stress tests alone are insufficient, and are urging the central government to create new safety standards based on investigations into the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant last March.