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Japan Government Formally Decides to Decommission Monju Reactor (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 21 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government formally decided on Wednesday to decommission the trouble-plagued Monju prototype fast-breeder nuclear reactor in Tsuruga in the central Japan prefecture of Fukui. At a meeting of relevant ministers, the government also determined that it will maintain its nuclear fuel cycle policy and continue to develop a new fast reactor by obtaining neces…
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Fukushima Cleanup Estimate Doubles to ¥21.5 Trillion (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 9 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese industry ministry said Friday that it has doubled its estimate for costs related to the 2011 meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to ¥21.5 trillion from some ¥11 trillion. The costs include ¥8 trillion for decommissioning, up from ¥2 trillion, ¥7.9 trillion for compensation, up from ¥5.4 trillion, ¥4 trillion for decontamination, up from …
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Japan, India Sign Nuclear Cooperation Pact (News)

Tokyo, Nov. 11 (Jiji Press)—Japan and India on Friday signed a bilateral nuclear cooperation pact that will enable Japan to export nuclear power plants to India. Among countries that are not signatories of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, India at present is the only nation concluding such a pact with Japan. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told his visiting Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, …
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Monju Fast-Breeder Reactor Set for Decommissioning

At a September 21 ministerial meeting, the Japanese government took a step toward decommissioning the Monju fast-breeder reactor in Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture. Cabinet members involved in nuclear power policy agreed to draw up plans within the year for the development of a new fast reactor to replace Monju, operated by the Japan Atomic Energy Agency. The formal decision to decommission the reactor …
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Niigata Voters Elect Antinuclear Governor in Blow to Abe’s Energy Policy

Antinuclear candidate Yoneyama Ryūichi won the Niigata gubernatorial contest on October 16, 2016, in a setback to the government’s efforts to restart Tokyo Electric Power’s largest nuclear plant, Kashiwazaki-Kariwa, located in the prefecture. Yoneyama, a doctor seeking office for the first time as an independent, ran on a platform of opposition to a restart and won the backing of the Japanese Comm…
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Timeline for March 2016

A court order forces Takahama Nuclear Power Station to halt operations, the Hokkaidō Shinkansen service starts, and the nation marks five years since the Great East Japan Earthquake. Here are the major news stories of March 2016.
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The Fukushima Cleanup Will Take GenerationsTakahashi Hideki

Five years after the Tōhoku tsunami triggered the second-worst nuclear accident in history, the cleanup team at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station has yet to stem the buildup of contaminated water at the site or determine the precise location of much of the reactor fuel. Veteran journalist Takahashi Hideki, who has reported extensively on the Fukushima accident, visited the site recently to report on the progress of decommissioning and the monumental obstacles that stand in the way of true recovery.
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Japan in 2015: The Year’s Top Stories

Security legislation passes amid protests, Prime Minister Abe Shinzō makes a statement to mark the seventieth anniversary of the ending of World War II, and Japanese hostages are killed in Syria. A look back on the biggest Japan-related stories of 2015.
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Time to Stop Nursing the Nuclear Power IndustryYoshioka Hitoshi

The resumption of commercial operations at a nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture last September might seem to bode well for the comeback of nuclear energy in Japan after the nationwide shutdown precipitated by the 2011 Fukushima meltdown. But the author argues that the government’s policy of “long-term nursing care” for an unsustainable industry is merely delaying the inevitable while exposing the nation to unacceptable risks.
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Timeline for May 2015

The volcano Shindake erupts on the southern island of Kuchinoerabujima, a plan to reform local government in Osaka is defeated, and debate over new security legislation begins in the Diet. These are the top Japanese stories for May 2015.
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