Japan’s New Govt to Review Zero Nuclear Policy

From The News

Japan’s new leaders set to work Thursday on dismantling plans to rid the country of nuclear power by 2040, pledging to review a post-Fukushima policy.

The pro-business Liberal Democratic Party-led government also said they would give the green light to any reactors deemed safe by regulators, indicating shuttered power stations could start coming back online.

“We need to reconsider the previous administration’s policy that aimed to make zero nuclear power operation possible during the 2030s,” Toshimitsu Motegi told a news conference.

Shinzo Abe, who was elected as prime minister and unveiled his cabinet line-up on Wednesday, appointed Motegi as his economy, trade and industry minister, also in charge of supervising the nuclear industry. Abe’s LDP won a landslide victory in the December 16 election, returning to power after a three-year break. Despite anti-nuclear sentiment running high in Japan following the Fukushima disaster, parties opposing atomic energy made little impact at the ballot box. Motegi said he was ready to give the go-ahead to resuming generation at nuclear power plants “if they are confirmed safe”.

Japanese media reported Thursday that Abe will visit the Fukushima power plant on Saturday and is also likely to visit temporary shelters housing those who were evacuated after the nuclear accident.

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