The LDP hasn’t even installed the new Prime Minister yet and the head of TEPCO is asking them for more money and the restart of Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant. TEPCO head Naomi Hirose claims he is not really asking the LDP for another handout as they take office since he asked for a handout back in November. Hirose also brought up his desire to restart TEPCO’s reactors at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa now that the nuclear-friendly LDP will be taking over.
The head of Japan’s new nuclear agency Shunichi Tanaka quickly squashed Hirose’s wish list.
“the industry watchdog will not approve restarts of nuclear power plants under the current circumstances due to electric power companies’ negligent handling of safety measures.”
“I find the current situation exceedingly unsatisfactory,” ”Reactors should not go online unless we are convinced of their safety.” said Tanaka.
Tanaka made his comments at a meeting with nuclear regulators from the US, France and the UK where he criticized Japan’s lax safety culture and regulation as a cause of the disaster. He also cited the nuclear power companies for doing only what they were forced to do and that the needed changes in the nuclear industry will be an enormous effort.
While work at Fukushima Daiichi has been slow and workers have complained about corner cutting and lack of funding by TEPCO for needed work to stabilize the plant, TEPCO has been spending money at an alarming rate to work on the Kashiwazki-Kariwa nuclear plant. A considerable portion of this TEPCO report documents extensive spending at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa in an attempt to restart the plant.
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