~ Japan’s Nuclear Program
Posted by faisalrenzo on March 17, 2011
Over four decades have passed since Japan’s first commercial nuclear power plant began operation in Ibaraki Prefecture in 1966. As of 2008, Japan has fifty-five reactors operating around the country with a total output of 49,467 megawatts (MW). Nuclear power accounts for approximately one-third of the country’s total electric power output.
As an island country, it is not possible for Japan to exchange energy with neighboring countries through power transmission lines or pipelines. Japan is also energy-scarce, depending on foreign countries for about 80 percent of its energy resources. These conditions are completely different from those of Europe or the U.S.; therefore, the government of Japan concludes that it is rational to continue making the fullest possible use of nuclear power generation as one of the mainstays of the nation’s energy supply. Nuclear power generation contributes to improved energy sufficiency and to the stability of the energy supply, in addition to playing an important role in reducing Japan’s carbon dioxide emissions.
Of course, nuclear power represents only one cornerstone in a comprehensive energy policy; one designed to meet the growing energy needs of Japan and based on an ideal mixture that includes thermal power and hydroelectric power. Japan’s electric power companies are prepared to meet this demand in the 21st century, and in the process, ensure that nuclear energy be used solely for peaceful purposes, and under the safest possible conditions.
While placing the highest priority on nuclear safety, Japanese electric power companies will continue their efforts to develop nuclear power generation as a base power source that plays an important role in Japan’s electric power supply in order to secure a steady supply of electricity and address global environmental problems.
Location of Nuclear Power Plants in Japan
There are currently 55 operating nuclear power plants in Japan. The ten FEPC member companies own and operate 52 Light Water Reactors (LWR). Three more LWRs are operated by the private company Japan Atomic Power Corporation (JAPC). The Monju Fast Breeder Reactor (a prototype reactor which was taken off line in the 90’s but expected to start up again soon) is run by the semi-governmental organization Japan Nuclear Cycle Development Institute (JNC). There are also two more nuclear plants currently under construction, as well as another 11 that are in advanced planning stages. One of those reactors in the planning stage will be owned and operated by another semi-private corporation, The Electric Power Development Co, Inc. (EPDC). Two reactors in Japan, JAPC’s Tokai and JNC’s Fugen Advanced Thermal Reactor prototype have been permanently closed.
List of Nuclear Power Plants in Japan
Below is each power plant’s individual information (as of October, 2007):
From the above table we can see that Japan are preparing to construct another dozen of nuclear plants to generate & supplies power to support their basic necessity i.e water & electricity water and also for research. Imagine if disaster strike again as what happen at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant now. What would happened to their people? country? and neighboring country? Not forget the world!!
Click here to view an overview map of Nuclear Power Plants in Japan.
See the list of nuclear reactors in the world here.