1. Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) revealed on Friday that it may give the approval to restart some of the country’s idled reactors as early as next summer, only after they pass safety inspections beginning in the spring. While only two of Japan’s nuclear reactors are currently online, they were given approval under provisional safety standards. The NRA says it is developing new safety requirements that will be imposed starting in July.
A bill was also passed by Parliament earlier this year that will require existing reactors to meet the new regulator’s standards before being allowed to restart. If they fail, they will have to conduct improvements in order to be considered once more. The NRA pledges to take responsibility for the safety of the reactors it approves, but in an about-face attempt to pass the ball, it says the government will have the final decision of which nuclear facilities are restarted. Much of the Japanese public wants to abandon the use of nuclear power altogether, and with general elections being held in less than two weeks, several political parties are pledging to phase out nuclear energy by the 2030s.
Economic Times – The Indian government has given approval for setting up six nuclear power plants with assistance from French company Areva at Jaitapur in Maharashtra, Minister of State in PMO V Narayanasamy told the Rajya Sabh. Work on two units of the 1,650 MW each is expected to start in the current Plan period. “The government has accorded in-principle approval for locating six units of Light Water Reactors each of 1,650 MW capacity at Jaitapur in technical co-operation with France,” Narayanasamy said.
“Construction work is going on in three such plants in Finland, three in France and two in China. We are going to build the power plant on that technology,” Narayanaswamy said.
3. Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said on Thursday China was seeking to form a partnership in Turkey to build the country’s planned second nuclear power plant and was offering financing without requiring a Treasury guarantee.
Yildiz said at an energy conference the lack of such a requirement was a “significant advantage”.
Turkey is in talks with Canada, South Korea and Japan, as well as China, regarding the planned plant at Sinop on the Black Sea and aims to reach a decision on who will build the plant by the end of the year.