Japan’s next Fukushimas?
March 9, 2023
With apparently no lessons learned from the devastating Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear disaster 12 years ago, the Japanese Cabinet has approved plans to extend the operating lives of its reactor fleet beyond the current 60-year limit. Under the country’s new GX Decarbonisation Power Supply Bill, continued dependence on fossil fuels and nuclear power is prioritized at the cost of renewable energy development. Environmental and anti-nuclear groups in Japan are fiercely opposed to this decision which, they say, will weaken safety regulation and allow for lifetime extensions that ignore levels of safety degradation at individual reactors. Groups also accuse the government of using the fuel crises provoked by the conflict in Ukraine as an excuse to promote nuclear power.
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