Tokyo: The Nuclear and Industrial Safety
Agency on Thursday said a nuclear reactor in Niigata Prefecture
is safe enough to resume commercial operation that has been
suspended since a major earthquake in 2007.
The No. 1 reactor is the third reactor at the
Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant to receive the agency`s
permission, but it still needs to gain permission from host
municipalities and the Nuclear Safety Commission of Japan
before it can actually resume operation.
The commission, established within the Cabinet, double
checks the safety of a reactor after the agency under the
Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry conducts checkups.
The reactor was shaken over its quake-resistance limit
when the earthquake hit the area, and its operator Tokyo
Electric Power Co. has since fixed its damage and beefed up
The operator has submitted to the government its plans to
boot the reactor for a test operation, which would gradually
raise its output until it reaches full capacity.
After checking its turbines and piping in the process, it
should then receive a state inspection and start commercial
operation, it said.
Of the seven reactors at the plant, the No. 6 and No. 7
reactors have resumed operation.