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Japanese authorities approve restart of Sendai NPP

October 28, 2014, 10:57 UTC+3 TOKYO
In July, Japan’s nuclear safety commission gave preliminary safety approval to the Sendai NPP which it said meets all the safety standards in case of accidents and disasters
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© AP Photo/Kyodo News

TOKYO, October 28. /TASS/. Lawmakers of Satsumasendai, in southern Japan, voted on Tuesday to restart the Sendai Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), in a first step towards reopening the industry following the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

The mayor of the city has approved the decision, local media reports said. The two-reactor nuclear power station is expected to reopen not earlier than in the beginning of 2015 as its operator, the Kyushu Electric Power Company, has to carry out additional checks of the safety systems.

Other Japanese cities near the nuclear power plant, located in Kagoshima Prefecture, to the south-west of Tokyo, have been calling against restarting the facility, but their objections in this case have no legal force.

In July, Japan’s nuclear safety commission gave preliminary safety approval to the Sendai NPP which it said meets all the safety standards in case of accidents and disasters, including powerful earthquakes and tsunamis.

The government said the most strict safety rules have been applied during the checks of the NPP.

The reopening of the 1.78GW nuclear power station is an important benchmark in Japan’s energy policy.

In March 2011, a strong earthquake triggered a high tsunami off the north-eastern coast of Japan. A gigantic wave hit the nuclear power plant Fukushima-1 that resulted in the most devastating nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl nuclear power plant catastrophe in 1986.

Some 300,000 people have been evacuated from the area, while over 15,000 people in the disaster. Another 1,600 deaths as of August 2013 were related to the evacuation conditions.

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