Japan Court Rules against Hokkaido N-Plant Restart


Sapporo, May 31 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese district court Tuesday ruled against restarting operations at Hokkaido Electric Power Co.'s <9509> Tomari nuclear power plant, citing safety concerns.

Tetsuya Taniguchi, presiding judge at Sapporo District Court, issued the ruling in a suit that some 1,200 plaintiffs, including local residents, filed in November 2011 demanding a halt and decommissioning of the plant in the village of Tomari in the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido for safety reasons.

Taniguchi ordered the power company not to operate the plant, saying that the facility "does not meet the standards for safety against tsunamis."

On the other hand, he rejected the demand for decommissioning the plant's three reactors with a combined output of 2 million kilowatts. All of the three remain idled.

According to the plaintiffs' lawyers, it is the third ruling ordering a nuclear plant halt since the March 2011 triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.'s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 plant, and the first in which insufficient tsunami measures are behind the decision.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press