Labor issues hamper Fukushima cleanup

The New York Times

The cleanup at Japan's crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant is being carried out by unskilled workers with little training, experience or supervision, The New York Times reports.

Quicker safety checks coming on 2 Japanese reactors


Regulators in Japan say two reactors in the southwest that are owned by the Kyushu Electric Power Co. will be getting safety checks, increasing the likelihood nuclear power may be part of the electricity mix for the country during this summer's peak demand season, Bloomberg reports.

US ex-nuclear chief: Fukushima lesson is phase-out

TOKYO (AP) — As radiation spewed from Japan's nuclear disaster three years ago, the top U.S. atomic energy regulator issued a 50-mile evacuation warning for any Americans in the area, a response some found extreme.

Gregory Jaczko, who stepped down as chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2012, still believes he was right, and says the events at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant show that nuclear power should be phased out in Japan and worldwide.

Japan's energy companies have spent $12.3 billion so far to restart nuke plants


The bill to restart Japan's nuclear reactors, stalled since the Fukushima disaster, has hit $12.3 billion and is still climbing, Bloomberg reports.

Contaminated water still troubles Japan nuke plant

OKUMA, Japan (AP) — The radioactive water that has accumulated at Japan's crippled nuclear power plant remains the biggest problem hampering the cleanup process three years after the disaster.

The Fukushima Dai-ichi plant has stabilized substantially since the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami destroyed its power and cooling system, triggering meltdowns. Massive amounts of water are being used to cool the melted cores at three reactors, but some of the contaminated water has seeped through the ground into the Pacific and leaked repeatedly from storage tanks.

Plant chief Akira Ono said Monday that improving water management is crucial not only to the plant cleanup but also decontamination of the area so evacuees can return to their homes.

Lingering fears keep Fukushima-area children indoors


Though outdoor activity limits have been lifted since the Fukushima Dai-ichi disaster in 2011, some children in the area suffer from muscular weakness, anger issues and lingering fear of going outside, Reuters reports.

GE betting on wind power in Japan


General Electric has developed a 2.85-megawatt turbine designed to capitalize on Japan's need to diversify its sources of energy in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, Bloomberg reports.

Japan plan keeps nuclear as key energy source

TOKYO (AP) — Japan unveiled its first draft energy policy since the Fukushima meltdowns three years ago, saying nuclear power remains an important source of electricity for the country.

The draft presented Tuesday to the Cabinet for approval expected in March, said Japan's nuclear energy dependency will be reduced as much as possible, but that reactors meeting new safety standards set after the 2011 nuclear crisis should be restarted.

Japanese reactor restarts to affect uranium prices, mining M&A


Restarts for Japanese reactors shut down in the wake of the Fukushima crisis will likely boost uranium prices and revive takeover activity in the mining sector, Bloomberg predicts.

Bhutan, Nissan partner on electric cars

TOKYO (AP) — The Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan has tapped Nissan Motor Co. to supply electric cars for its taxis and government fleet, hoping to reduce reliance on imported oil.

Under the agreement announced Friday, Nissan will supply its Leaf electric car and set up charging stations in Bhutan.

Bhutan, with a population of 720,000, produces and exports hydroelectricity. But it's eager to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels shipped in from abroad.


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