Kyushu received draft approval from the NRA in mid-July for the restart of the Sendai units. That approval – which meant the NRA considered the two reactors, and the plant as a whole, to be safe for operation – represented by far the major part of the licensing process.
Two smaller regulatory approvals remain before the Sendai plant can restart. The NRA said that it will now review the detailed design and construction of the reactors and related facilities, as well as operational safety programs, including organization systems and procedures for accident responses. These final stages could possibly be completed by the end of the year.
Once those steps are complete, the NRA would be able to issue its final approval for operation. Kyushu then has an important social obligation to gain informal approval from political leaders in Kagoshima prefecture. However, the federal government has final say on whether nuclear power plants operate.
Japan’s entire fleet of 48 operable nuclear reactors has remained out of service for almost the past year following loss of confidence in Japan’s nuclear safety arrangements after the Fukushima accident of 2011. Safety assessment applications for 18 other reactors remain at the review stage with Takahama 3 and 4 said by the NRA to be the next most advanced.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.