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Gov't approves TEPCO's revival plan to restart Niigata reactors

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From Wikipedia: "It was approximately 15 miles (24 km) from the epicenter of the second strongest earthquake to ever occur at a nuclear plant, the Mw 6.6 July 2007 Chūetsu offshore earthquake. This shook the plant beyond design basis and initiated an extended shutdown for inspection, which indicated that greater earthquake-proofing was needed before operation could be resumed. The plant was completely shut down for 21 months following the earthquake."

So we have a plant located where a large earthquake has previously occurred run by a company unable to handle a nuclear plant disaster. What's not to like?

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Socialize the cost (of disaster), privatize the profits (once Tepco is "revived").

Crony capitalism in a demented nutshell.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

How about restoring Fukushima and surrounding areas first, and getting those people out of the shelters and giving them their compensation money? How about ACTUALLY getting the Fukushima NPP under control? Nah, just give TEPCO more bailouts and restart a reactor that is just off an active fault line. We all know TEPCO can handle it.

Good news for Hosokawa running in Tokyo, though. He can use this to his advantage.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

The old boys network, what best for us, how can we make money. This story repeats itself worldwide. I wish people would wake up to the fact that governments worldwide don't care about their citizens,period.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

... and no mention of addressing the overcharging by the "construction companies" (ie. Yakuza). Not one iota of thought given to those who are risking their lives every day for next to nothing, only to be shafted after a number of months without severance pay or future employment prospects.

... or the poor people of Fukushima who will be unable to return to their homes in this lifetime.

I'm still baffled as to how Tokyo even got the Olympics with all this going on...

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It's highly unlikely TEPCO will be given permission any time soon to restart any reactors at its Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear plant in Niigata. The NRA still have to inspect the plant, decide if the plant is on an active fault line. TEPCO also needs to win the support of the prefecture governor and the people of the local community.

A separate gov't agency should be formed to deal with the nuclear disaster which will take at least 100 years costing more than ¥50 trillion.

Then TEPCO should be sold off to recover some of the ¥10 trillion of public money already given to the company.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

With so many nuclear plants and so little land, is anywhere safe in Japan? No oe needs to worry about NK or China. Japan is doing a good job of nuking itself. As for Fukushima Daiichi, it can't be considered save until all the fuel rods are removed, which may be impossible.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Revival? They must be dreaming

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Because a large majority of the Japanese public remain opposed to, or with deep concerns about the future use of nuclear energy energy and reactors, the LDP gov't have decided to delay its planned announcement on the country’s long-term energy strategy, which includes the use of nuclear energy.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Ha ha, they may as well delay the announcement indefnitely

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

This is a forgone conclusion. It has been in the works all the time. Part of Shinzo Abe's plans to re-start all the closed down nuclear plants but at a high cost to the people. First devalue the yen. Imported energy costs goes up. People start to complain. And then Abe suggests re-starting all the plants and taking further risks with potentially more disastrous failures when the next huge earthquake and tsunamis hit.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You all seem to ignore the fact that it's Tepco that provides you with the electricity you depend you good life in Tokyo on. Without Tepco you woyld not even be able to write these comments.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

The revival of TEPCO should include a complete restructuring of the management and monitoring by a third party agency to ensure they don't 'skip' safety procedures, which is what lead to the meltdowns at Fukushima. It should also include guarantees that the public are not gonna be leeched to support the restructuring and any profits turned by the company are funneled back to the consumer and not the bueraucratic cronies. However, we all know it will be completely opposite. The same management will be restored, they will continue to dodge safety upgrades and the public will foot the bill. Fan-bloody-tastic! It must be wonderful to be above the law.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@Per Christer Lund

You all seem to ignore the fact that it's Tepco that provides you with the electricity you depend you good life in Tokyo on. Without Tepco you woyld not even be able to write these comments.

The customers of TEPCO owe that company nothing. For a starter, it was discovered that TEPCO had been overcharging all its customers for more than 10 years but because the company is now technically bankrupt nothing was done about returning overcharges, just another act of freud and theft.

TEPCO has been a corrupt company for decades and because it always put profit before safety, we ended up with the worse nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. Something, admitted by the company last year. None of the 20 or so executives and directors face any criminal procedures, and instead they all resigned with handsome golden handshakes and further well paid jobs in other companies which TEPCO has stock in.

Since the nuclear disaster, TEPCO have received ¥10 trillion in public funds. The disaster will use up a further ¥25 trillion over the next 10 years. The nuclear disaster will eventually cost more than $50 trillion and that figure could easily become ¥100 trillion by the end of the disaster in more than 100 years from now.

Many of the people who work for TEPCO have a hard time now working for the most hated company in the country. They need to hide who they work for.

The company should be sold off to one of the other power utilities or a new power utility can be formed to take over the business of TEPCO.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Abe must be in a panic mode just about now after he saw Japan's November account deficit numbers which was another all time record. That's why he badly wants the nuclear plants restarted. And I got a feeling nobody will be able to stop the pressure to restart the plants after Japan turns in a yearly account deficit in 2014 for the first time in several decades. When that happens there will be a mass panic in Tokyo stock market and they won't have to print money to keep the Yen low anymore. If it's not Abe, it will be the next PM. Once the economy goes sour, the resistance towards nuclear plants will also dissipate. But the trouble is, even if they restart the plants and dial down the energy imports, it's doubtful that would be enough for Japan to avert the deficits.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

a yearly account deficit in 2014 .... there will be a mass panic in Tokyo stock market

What about the mass panic at the next nuke disaster ? With the geography and the "talent" of the operators, if they reopen plants, that's not about "if" but about "when" the next Fukushima happens.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

It seems like crony politics and organized crime are deeply in the fabric of the LDP.

Perhaps they ARE the fabric of the LDP.

In the US we have Wall Street and the War Machine, . . same thing.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I might not be concerned if the government had cleaned house at TEPCO or handed the plant management to somebody else. But I don't trust TEPCO to pick up after the dog. There's just too much at stake when it comes to nukes to let somebody who obviously bent the rules to do the job (again).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Instead of bailout TEPCO, they should have let capitalism work and let TEPCO die. At the very least, the Gov should have taken over, jailed the executives, and let the stock go to zero. Then the question will be how should the electric system in Japan work. It is insane to have so many power companies who don't compete with each other but have territorial monopolies and where west Japan and east Japan have incompatible electricity. Japan is smaller than the state of Montana in the US. If there is not competition among the power companies why have so many? And a gov that alllows a power to manage a nuclear accident is totally off. Fukushima was preventable if Japan had a really regulated their nuclear industry but they didn't. They just winged it. How many more Fukushima's are out there. Only another major quake, volcanic eruption or tsunami will tell. And if history is a guide, it may be worse.

BTW, Montana is 147K sq miles with no nuclear plants and Japan is 145K sq miles with 18 plants x many reactors. Guess the only place that can be considered safe is NW Hokkaido (point pointing toward Russia) and the Akita area( if you don't consider SK). Okinawa island chain too if you don't consider nuclear plants in China.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Japan has had nuclear power since the 70s and only one major accident. I would like to see more research into Thorium reactors, though. As for renewable resources, it's not feasible with Japan's lack of land area. For better or for worse nuclear power seems to be the most sane option.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

jeff198527, that's not true at all. Japan had many nuclear accidents since the 1960's, not just Fukushima. Fukushima was the only the one they couldn't cover up because it was just too big. The nuclear watch industry warned about Japan's nuclear plants and the scandals long before Fukushima.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

If Fukushima was a 9.0 earthquake, then why wasn't the tsunami a mile or more high?

Chucky3176, there have been three major nuclear accidents. Yes, bad, evil TEPCO for not having psychic powers and predicting the earthquake and tsunami.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

J Govt owns over 50% of TEPCO and PM Shinzo thinks Fukushima Food keeps him healthy add those two together and you get Nuclear Power is in Nihon to stay..... Accidents at Fukushima? What accidents?.... TEPCO has had the money to compensate those affected by the disaster since July of 2012......

TEPCO gets Y1 tril in public funds, putting it under gov't control

http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/tepco-gets-y1-tril-in-public-funds-putting-it-under-govt-control

http://www.japantoday.com/category/politics/view/abe-claims-fukushima-food-keeps-him-healthy

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Regarding TEPCO, what planet does the Japanese government inhabit? Planet stick-your-head-in-the-sand perhaps.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@chucky3176 there's many bad points, accidents, mismanagement and lack of safety features and inspections at all the nuclear power plants in South Korea too.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

In the event of a nuclear disaster there is little that can be done to prevent the spread of radioactivity. This is why all reactors in Japan must be shut down and other types of energy used.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I do want to point out the slight hypocrisy of wanting TEPCO to pay for everything and then criticizing every move they make to make more money.

I'm just tired of seeing the same people complain about restarting nuclear plants and complain about rate hikes.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Niigata Governor Hirohiko Izumida bluntly called the plan “a pie in the sky idea.”

3 ( +3 / -0 )

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