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Restart of Japan’s Oi nuclear reactors gets implicit approval

The Fukui Prefectural Assembly effectively gave its green light on Thursday to the restart of the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors at Kansai Electric Power Co.’s Oi nuclear power plant.

By a majority vote at a plenary meeting, the assembly adopted an opinion paper which implicitly assumes the reactors will restart.

The final step in the procedure show adequate local consent for resuming the operations of the reactors will be Fukui Gov. Issei Nishikawa’s stamp of approval.

“I’ll make a decision on the basis of (the intentions of) the town of Oi and the prefectural assembly,” Nishikawa told reporters after the plenary meeting.

Nishikawa added that he is “still not sure” when he will make a decision.

While opinion paper does not explicitly state that the prefectural assembly gives its consent to put the reactors back online, its assertions are predicated on Kansai Electric’s planned restart.

To secure safety for local residents and Japanese people, the paper strongly demands that the central government take four measures, such as gaining public understanding of the necessity of nuclear plants, compiling evacuation plans that cover wide areas and improving the effectiveness of the safety plans.

Two other measures involve creating solutions for managing spent nuclear fuel and programs to revitalizing the local communities around the Oi plant.

The assembly of the town, which hosts the nuclear plant, gave consent for the resttart on Sept. 8 and Oi Mayor Hiroshi Nakatsuka announced his approval on Monday.

Source: The Japan Times

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