Two Japanese nuclear reactors have been given the green light to be switched back on for the first time since 2011. The power plant is approximately 100km outside the city of Osaka in southern Japan. Before the tsunami and subsequent earthquake in 2011, approximately 1/3 of Japanese power was generated through nuclear energy. The Japanese government is expecting a summer of power shortages. This news is expected to be good for the environment and will reduce Japan’s reliance on Fossil Fuel imports. Local communities remain on edge.
Since a tsunami triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima plant in 2011, residents have demanded reactors not be turned back on after routine maintenance.
The sole nuclear reactor still in action will be switched off in May.
Regional authorities need to give their approval before the two reactors at the Ohi plant in western Japan can restart.
The plant is about 100km (60 miles) north of the city of Osaka, Japan’s second biggest city. It is operated by Kansai Electric Power.
‘Severe power shortages’
Industry Minister Yukio Edano said inspectors had “finally confirmed” that Ohi’s Number 3 and Number 4 reactors were safe and that the government “deemed it necessary” to restart them.
But Mr Edano warned that Japan still faced a summer of “very severe power shortages”.
Before the Fukushima disaster, nearly a third of Japan’s electricity was generated by nuclear power.
But the six-reactor Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was badly damaged by the earthquake and tsunami, with explosions and partial meltdowns in several of the reactors.
News Source: BBC