As of now, Japan’s nuclear reactors face an uncertain future despite stricter regulations from the government. One of these restrictions include a ban of locating reactor facilities by power companies on fault lines. The government also limited the amount of time that a reactor can stay in existence to 40 years. 13 of the nuclear reactors in Japan are going to be decommissioned. In addition to this, all nuclear reactors in Japan must improve in preventing fires. As for the Fukushima plant where the disaster occurred, it is not certain whether the reactors will still operate. However, the nuclear reactors that the government considers safe will open soon.
Fukushima Still Struggling
While the other nuclear plants and their reactors seem to be bouncing back three years after the disaster, Fukushima is still trying to get back to what it once was prior to the disaster. One concern that some policy experts in Japan have is that the plant hires subcontractors and this may pose a hazard for the plant since they may not know the proper procedures for preventing disasters and handling the situation should a disaster occur. Safety is one of the main issues that this plant is dealing with.
Japan Sees Benefits of Safer Nuclear Plants
Since a majority of the country’s nuclear plants and reactors are now safer than they were three years ago, the Japanese government sees these plants as beneficial to the country’s economy and overall stability. The government sees nuclear power as fuel for its’ electricity and they also mentioned that nuclear power could reduce their dependency on foreign oil. The government mentioned that without steady nuclear power electricity prices could skyrocket.
Not All Citizens Are Impressed With New Conditions of Reactors
Recently in Tokyo thousands of protesters met to protest the reopening of nuclear plants and reactors throughout Japan. One protester said that he feels that Japan can live without nuclear power and that it can be done using alternative and renewable sources of energy. Other protesters are concerned that a continuation of nuclear power could cause health hazards should another disaster strike at one of the reactors.
Japan Will Combine Renewable Energy and Nuclear Power
While Japan plans to reopen the nuclear plants, it has not abandoned the possibility of using renewable energy and in fact it wants a combination of the two sources of energy to create a more sustainable and workable energy policy.
Since the 2011 disaster in Fukushima, radiation has made several parts of Japan uninhabitable and residents’ health suffered as a result. In addition, some of this radiation leaked out into the waters in the Pacific Ocean onto the West Coast. Despite concerns from some policy experts and Japanese citizens, it appears that nuclear plants will stick around in Japan for years to come. The key is for these plants to maintain safe standards for workers and the area outside the plants. Finally, the workers will need thorough training in the procedures performed at the plant.