25 February, 2016
NRA Approves Takahama-1 and -2 NPPs as Compatible with New Regulatory Standards
On February 24, Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) approved the Takahama-1 and -2 Nuclear Power Plants (PWRs, 826MWe each), owned and operated by the Kansai Electric Power Co. (Kansai EP), as compatible with the new regulatory standards. Both units have already been operated for more than 40 years, and this is the first time that such “aging reactors” were approved.
The determination of safety of the reactors under the new regulatory standards will be formally approved after hearings by the Japan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC) and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), and after a public invitation for scientific and technological comments.
In order for the units to be restarted, however, examinations and permission to extend their operating lifetimes will have to be completed by the mandatory deadline of July 2016 (an extraordinary provision for aging reactors in line with the revised law for the regulation of nuclear source material, nuclear fuel material and reactors).