Hamaoka Nuclear Power Plant
The Hamaoka Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant in the city of Omaezaki in Shizuoka Prefecture, on Japan's east coast, 200 km south-west of Tokyo. It is managed by the Chubu Electric Power Company. There are five units contained at a single site with a net area of 1.6 km2. A sixth unit began construction on December 22, 2008. On January 30, 2009, Hamaoka-1 and Hamaoka-2 were permanently shut down. On 6 May 2011, Prime Minister Naoto Kan requested the plant be shut down as an earthquake of magnitude 8.0 or higher was estimated 87% to hit the area within the following 30 years. Kan wanted to avoid a possible repeat of the Fukushima nuclear disaster. On 9 May 2011, Chubu Electric decided to comply with the government request. In July 2011, a mayor in Shizuoka Prefecture and a group of residents filed a lawsuit seeking the decommissioning of the reactors at the Hamaoka nuclear power plant permanently. Hamaoka is built directly over the subduction zone near the junction of two tectonic plates, a major Tōkai earthquake is said to be overdue.
The possibility of such a shallow magnitude 8.0 earthquake in the Tokai region was pointed out by Kiyoo Mogi in 1969, 7 months before permission to construct the Hamaoka plant was sought, by the Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction in 1970, prior to the permission being granted on December 10, 1970. As a consequence, Professor Katsuhiko Ishibashi, a former member of a government panel on nuclear reactor safety, claimed in 2004 that Hamaoka was'considered to be the most dangerous nuclear power plant in Japan' with the potential to create a genpatsu-shinsai. In 2007, following the 2007 Chūetsu offshore earthquake, Dr Mogi, by chair of Japan's Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction, called for the immediate closure of the plant. On 6 May 2011, Japanese prime minister Naoto Kan asked Chubu Electric Power Company, which operates the Hamaoka plant, to halt reactors No. 4 and No. 5, not to restart reactor No. 3, offline for regular inspection. Kan said that a science ministry panel on earthquake research has projected an 87% possibility of a magnitude-8-class earthquake hitting the region within 30 years.
He said that considering the unique location of the Hamaoka plant, the operator must draw up and implement mid-to-long-term plans to ensure the reactors can withstand the projected Tōkai earthquake and any triggered tsunami. Kan said that until such plans are implemented, all the reactors should remain out of operation. Chubu Electric has decided to comply with the government request on 9 May 2011; the Yomiuri Shimbun, one of Japan's largest newspapers, criticized Kan and his request, calling it "abrupt" and noting the difficulty towards Chubu Electric's shareholders and further stated Kan "should reflect on the way he made his request". Yomiuri followed up with an article that wondered how dangerous Hamaoka was and claimed the request was "a political judgment that went beyond technological worthiness"; the next day damage to the pipes inside the condenser were discovered following a leak of seawater into the reactor. The plant has been designed to withstand an earthquake of magnitude 8.5. Sand hills of up to 15 metres height provide defence against a tsunami of up to 8 metres high, but Hamaoka lacks a concrete sea barrier.
On 22 July 2011 plans were unfolded to build an 18-meter-high embankment by December 2012 to prevent tsunami damage to the facility. This would protect the reactors against waves higher than the waves that occurred in the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant on 11 March 2011; the barrier would be 10 meters taller than the highest waves expected in the area in the event of 3 major earthquakes occurring at the same time. Plans were studied to build a new embankment 1.5 kilometers along the coast by the plant. Next to this a waterproof building was planned to house a backup-pump and the wall around the reactors was extended. Overall costs of the plans: 1.3 billion dollars. The plant showed stellar performance through the 1990s, problems that caused Unit 1 to be shut down from 2001 to present, Unit 2 from 2005 to present hurt the capacity factor figures in the recent history of the plant. On November 7, 2001, a valve in the HPCI system of Unit 1 ruptured during a Periodical-manual-startup-test. Since this is considered a part of the ECCS, the implications reach further than the event itself, drew into question the reliability of the emergency safety system.
Unit 2 was shut down for the purpose of investigating similar structures. Too recent to cover the entire relevant time frame in the data above, on June 15, 2006 Unit 5 was shut down due to excessive turbine vibrations, it was discovered that a number of turbine vanes had completely broken off. In the turbine that failed, nearly all vanes showed fractures or cracking while the majority of the vanes of the other two low pressure turbines showed problems. Fault for the problems was placed on the NSSS supplier. 1991, April 4 – Unit 3 reactor coolant supply lowered, automatic SCRAM 2001, November 7 – Unit 1 pipe burst accident 2001, November 9 – Unit 1 coolant leak accident 2002 – In an independent inspection, it was discovered that 16 unique signs of cracks in steam pipes were known by the utility but failed to report to the prefecture level authorities. 2002, May 24 – Unit 2 water leak 2004, February 21 – Unit 2 outbreak of fire in room above turbine room. 2004, August – Unit 4 problem with fabrication of data by utility.
2005, November 4 – Unit 1 pipe leak incident 2005, November 16 – Unit 3 outside pipe leak due to corrosion 2005, November 16 – Unit 1 spent fuel pool had foreign ma
Prime Minister of Japan
The Prime Minister of Japan is the head of government of Japan. The Prime Minister is appointed by the Emperor of Japan after being designated by the National Diet and must enjoy the confidence of the House of Representatives to remain in office, he dismisses the other Ministers of State. The literal translation of the Japanese name for the office is Minister for the Comprehensive Administration of the Cabinet. Before the adoption of the Meiji Constitution, Japan had in practice no written constitution. A Chinese-inspired legal system known as ritsuryō was enacted in the late Asuka period and early Nara period, it described a government based on an elaborate and rational meritocratic bureaucracy, serving, in theory, under the ultimate authority of the Emperor. Theoretically, the last ritsuryō code, the Yōrō Code enacted in 752, was still in force at the time of the Meiji Restoration. Under this system, the Daijō-daijin was the head of the Daijō-kan, the highest organ of Japan's pre-modern Imperial government during the Heian period and until under the Meiji Constitution with the appointment of Sanjō Sanetomi in 1871.
The office was replaced in 1885 with the appointment of Itō Hirobumi to the new position of Prime Minister, four years before the enactment of the Meiji Constitution, which mentions neither the Cabinet nor the position of Prime Minister explicitly. It took its current form with the adoption of the Constitution of Japan in 1947. To date, 62 people have served this position; the current Prime Minister is Shinzō Abe, who re-took office on December 26, 2012. He is the first former Prime Minister to return to office since 1948, the 4th longest serving Prime Minister to date; the Prime Minister is designated by both houses of the Diet, before the conduct of any other business. For that purpose, each conducts a ballot under the run-off system. If the two houses choose different individuals a joint committee of both houses is appointed to agree on a common candidate. However, if the two houses do not agree within ten days, the decision of the House of Representatives is deemed to be that of the Diet. Therefore, the House of Representatives can theoretically ensure the appointment of any Prime Minister it wants.
The candidate is presented with his or her commission, formally appointed to office by the Emperor. In practice, the Prime Minister is always the leader of the majority party in the House of Representatives, or the leader of the senior partner in the governing coalition. Must be a member of either house of the Diet. Must be a "civilian"; this excludes serving members of the Japan Self-Defense Forces. Former military persons may be appointed prime minister despite the "civilian" requirement, Yasuhiro Nakasone being one prominent example. Exercises "control and supervision" over the entire executive branch. Presents bills to the Diet on behalf of the Cabinet. Signs laws and Cabinet orders. Appoints all Cabinet ministers, can dismiss them at any time. May permit legal action to be taken against Cabinet ministers. Must make reports on foreign relations to the Diet. Must report to the Diet upon demand to provide explanations. May advise the Emperor to dissolve the Diet's House of Representatives. Presides over meetings of the Cabinet.
Commander-in-chief of the Japan Self-Defense Forces. May override a court injunction against an administrative act upon showing of cause. In most other constitutional monarchies, the monarch is nominal chief executive, while being bound by convention to act on the advice of the cabinet. In contrast, the Constitution of Japan explicitly vests executive power in the Cabinet, of which the Prime Minister is the leader, his signature is required for Cabinet orders. While most ministers in parliamentary democracies have some freedom of action within the bounds of cabinet collective responsibility, the Japanese Cabinet is an extension of the Prime Minister's authority. Located near the Diet building, the Office of the Prime Minister of Japan is called the Kantei; the original Kantei served from 1929 until 2002, when a new building was inaugurated to serve as the current Kantei. The old Kantei was converted into the Official Residence, or Kōtei; the Kōtei lies to the southwest of the Kantei, is linked by a walkway.
The Prime Minister of Japan travels in a Lexus LS 600h L, the official transport for the head of government, or an unmodified Toyota Century escorted by a police motorcade of numerous Toyota Celsiors. For long distance air travel, Japan maintains two Boeing 747-400 aircraft for the Prime Minister of Japan, the Emperor and other members of the Imperial Family, operated by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force, they have the radio callsigns Japanese Air Force One and Japanese Air Force Two when operating on official business, Cygnus One and Cygnus Two when operating outside of official business. The aircraft always fly together on government missions, with one serving as the primary transport and the other serving as a backup with maintenance personnel on board; the aircraft are referred to as Japanese government exclusive aircraft. The aircraft were constructed at the Boeing factory at the same time as the U. S. Air Force One VC-25s, though the U. S. aircraft wer
Nuclear power in Japan
Prior to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, Japan had generated 30% of its electrical power from nuclear reactors and planned to increase that share to 40%. Nuclear power energy was a national strategic priority in Japan; as of February 2019, there are 42 operable reactors in Japan. Of these, 9 reactors in 5 power plants are operating. Though all of Japan's nuclear reactors withstood shaking from the Tohoku earthquake, flooding from the ensuing tsunami caused the failure of cooling systems at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant on 11 March 2011. Japan's first-ever nuclear emergency was declared, 140,000 residents within 20 km of the plant were evacuated. A comprehensive assessment by international experts on the health risks associated with the Fukushima I nuclear power plant disaster concluded in 2013 that, for the general population inside and outside Japan, the predicted risks were low and no observable increases in cancer rates above baseline rates were anticipated. All Japan's nuclear plants were closed.
The last of Japan's fifty reactors went offline for maintenance on 5 May 2012, leaving Japan without nuclear-produced electrical power for the first time since 1970. Problems in stabilizing the triple reactor meltdowns at Fukushima I nuclear plant hardened attitudes to nuclear power. In June 2011, more than 80 percent of Japanese said they were anti-nuclear and distrusted government information on radiation. By October 2011, there had been electricity shortages, but Japan survived the summer without the extensive blackouts that some had predicted. An energy white paper, approved by the Japanese Cabinet in October 2011, stated that "Public confidence in safety of nuclear power was damaged" by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, called for a reduction in the nation’s reliance on nuclear power. Despite protests, on 1 July 2012 unit 3 of the Ōi Nuclear Power Plant was restarted. In September 2013, Ōi units 3 and 4 went offline, making Japan again without nuclear-produced electrical power. On August 11, 2015, the Sendai Nuclear Power Plant was brought back online, followed by two units of the Takahama Nuclear Power Plant on January 29, 2016.
However, Unit 4 was shut down three days after restart due to an internal failure and Unit 3 in March 2016 after district court in Shiga prefecture issued an injunction to halt operation of Takahama Nuclear Power Plant. Though 43 of Japan's pre-2011 total of 54 plants remain idled, the Ministry of Economy and Industry said in 2017 that if the country is to meet its obligations under the Paris climate accord nuclear energy needs to make up between 20-22% of the nation's portfolio mix. 26 restart applications are now pending with an estimated 12 units to come back in service by 2025 and 18 by 2030. In 1954, the Operations Coordinating Board of the United States National Security Council proposed that the U. S. government undertake a "vigorous offensive" urging nuclear energy for Japan in order to overcome the widespread reluctance of the Japanese population to build nuclear reactors in the country. Thirty two million Japanese people, a third of the Japanese population, signed a petition calling for banning hydrogen bombs.
The Washington Post called for adopting the proposal to build nuclear reactors in Japan, stating: "Many Americans are now aware...that the dropping of the atomic bombs on Japan was not necessary.... How better to make a contribution to amends than by offering Japan...atomic energy." For several years starting in 1954, the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other U. S. government agencies ran a propaganda war targeting the Japanese population to vanquish the Japanese people's opposition to nuclear power. In 1954, Japan budgeted 230 million yen for nuclear energy, marking the beginning of the Japan's nuclear program; the Atomic Energy Basic Law limited activities to only peaceful purposes. The first nuclear reactor in Japan was built by the UK's GEC and was commissioned in 1966. In the 1970s, the first light water reactors were built in cooperation with American companies; these plants were bought from U. S. vendors such as General Electric and Westinghouse with contractual work done by Japanese companies, who would get a license themselves to build similar plant designs.
Developments in nuclear power since that time have seen contributions from Japanese companies and research institutes on the same level as the other big users of nuclear power. From the early 1970s to the present, the Japanese government promoted the siting of nuclear power plants through a variety of policy instruments involving soft social control and financial incentives. By offering large subsidies and public works projects to rural communities and by using educational trips, junkets for local government officials, OpEds written as news by pro-nuclear supporters, the central government won over the support of depopulating, hard-on-their-luck coastal towns and villages. Japan's nuclear industry was not hit as hard by the effects of the Three Mile Island accident or the Chernobyl disaster as some other countries. Construction of new plants continued to be strong through the 1980s, 1990s, up to the present day. While many new plants had been proposed, all were subsequently canceled or never brought past initial planning.
Cancelled plant orders include: The Hōhoku Nuclear Power Plant at Hōhoku, Yamaguchi—1994 The Kushima Nuclear Power Plant at Kushima, Miyazaki—1997 The Ashihama Nuclear Power Plant at Ashihama, Mie—2000 The Maki Nuclear Power Plant at Maki, Niigata —Canceled in 2003 The Suzu Nuclear Power Plant at Suzu, Ishikawa—2003However, starting in the mid-1990s there were several nuclear rel
Ikata Nuclear Power Plant
The Ikata Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant in the town of Ikata in the Nishiuwa District of Ehime Prefecture, Japan. It is the only nuclear plant on the island of Shikoku, it is operated by the Shikoku Electric Power Company. The plant was shut down along with all other nuclear plants in Japan following the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Unit 3 was reactivated using plutonium-uranium mixed oxide fuel on 12 August 2016 and began providing electricity to the grid three days later. On December 13, 2017, the Hiroshima High Court issued a temporary injunction to halt the operation of the Ikata 3 nuclear reactor in Japan’s Shikoku region until September 2018; the plant is on a site with an area of 860,000 square metres. On March 3, 2004 there was a coolant leak in Unit 3. On August 13, 2003 the maximum burnup for spent fuel was changed from 48,000 MWd/ton to 55,000 MWd/ton. In January 2006 Mitsubishi Heavy Industries announced the completion of the replacement of the internal structure of the No.1 reactor.
It was the world's first all-in-one extraction and replacement of the core internals of a PWR reactor. The upper and lower internals of the reactor were replaced in order to accommodate more control rods and allow for higher fuel burnup. In 2010, a partial MOX fuel core was loaded into the No.3 reactor for the cycle beginning February 24, 2010. On Sunday 4 September reactor no. 1 was shut down for regular inspections. These check-ups would last at least three months. At that time reactor No.3 was shut down, although the normal inspections were long time finished before September. To resume operation, a stress test was required for all suspended reactors by the government, after the accidents in Fukushima; the Ehime prefectural government said it would decide whether to approve the resumption of operations after the results of the safety test came out. The Shikoku Electric Power Company said that if the No. 3 reactor did not resume operations, power supplies would be tight in winter when electricity demand would be high.
It was considered to restart a thermal power-plant, long out of use. In February 2012 an evacuation drill was held in Shimane; the drill was done to mimic the situation of a reactor cooling failure after a huge earthquake. The evacuation-zones were expanded from 10 to 30 kilometers after the disaster in Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. In this evacuation drill some 10.000 people were taken out of the area round the nuclear power plant, with buses and boats of the Maritime Self-Defense Force. The residents in the town of Ikata, commanded by disaster announcements on the radio to gather at a junior high school. From there they were taken by buses to a shelter some 50 kilometers further; this drill was the first executed on this scale, it was the first time that so many people were evacuated out from their town. On 19 April 2016, unit 3 received from NRA the final approval to restarting. On 27 June, Shikoku Electric completed loading 157 fuel assemblies, of which 16 uranium-plutonium mixed oxide.
Unit 3 resumed commercial service on 7 September. However, on 13 December 2017 the Hiroshima High Court revoked the lower court decision, ordering the close of the unit until the end of September 2018. Shikoku Electric plans to appeal; the dispute centres on the evaluation of earthquake risk under the stricter post Fukushima regulations. In Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, Godzilla approaches the nuclear plant, the actions of the Japan Self Defense Forces are stalled in action against the monster, fearing that a direct attack could cause a nuclear explosion and destroy the planet. Thankfully, the Super X-III weapon comes to the rescue and freezes the beast before he can do any more harm. Shikoku Electric Company Shikoku Electric Company - Ikata NPP
Tomari Nuclear Power Plant
The Tomari Nuclear Power Plant is the only nuclear power plant in Hokkaidō, Japan. It is located in the town of Tomari in the Furuu District and is managed by the Hokkaido Electric Power Company. All of the reactors are Mitsubishi designs; the plant site totals 1,350,000 m2, with an additional 70,000 m2 of reclaimed land. The plant was going to be located on an island and be named the Kyowa-Tomari NPP, but there was a change in plans and the location and name was changed. On 17 August 2000, a worker fell into a sump tank in a radioactive waste treatment building of the plant; the worker died in the hospital later. In July 2007, there were three separate fires related to the new unit, under construction. Electrical wiring had been cut and foul play was suspected; this came just days after related events at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant. On September 29, 2007, Kazutoshi Michinaka reported that there was no radiation leakage and no one was hurt after a small fire at the half-built third reactor occurred.
At least 7 arson cases have been reported at the construction site in 2007. On March 11, 2011, at the time of the Tohoku earthquake, the Number 3 reactor was undergoing the last phase of its regular inspection, a so-called "adjustment operation", which had started on March 7. Reactors in Japan are brought into full commercial operation about 1 month after starting this adjustment, but because of the aftermath of the Fukushima-disaster, Hokkaido Electric Power Company withheld the final Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency check-up application; when the utility filed it in early August 2011, the Number 3 reactor had been operating on trial and providing electricity at nearly full power for 5 months. NISA reported to the Nuclear Safety Commission on 11 August that no problems were found in the reactor during a 2-day final check that ended on 10 August. According to NISA, the reactor could safely be restarted, but the Hokkaido governor criticized the operator for submitting the application before it had reached its own decision on restarting.
Industry minister Banri Kaieda told Governor Harumi Takahashi that the prefecture's consent was vital, that he would wait for their decision. On August 17, 2011, the Japanese Government approved the restart of reactor Number 3; this was the first nuclear reactor given permission to be taken into service again after the events in Fukushima of March 11, 2011. On May 5, 2012, the reactor Number 3 was shut down for regular inspections, meaning of all 50 reactors in Japan, none were producing energy, which has only occurred once before, between 30 April and 4 May 1970, since the start of Japanese commercial nuclear power generation in 1966. After the nuclear disaster in Fukushima in March 2011, Japanese public opinion shifted away from nuclear power generation; the shutdown of the last active nuclear power plant caused a demonstration of thousands in Tokyo celebrating a "nuclear free" Japan. Seismic research in 2011 showed that the March 11 quake was caused by the simultaneous movement of multiple active faults at the coast of the Pacific Ocean in northern Japan and that much bigger earthquakes could be triggered than the plants were built to withstand.
In February, the Tokai Daini Plant in Ibaraki Prefecture and the Tomari power facility in Hokkaido said that they could not rule out the possibility that the plants were vulnerable. Other nuclear power stations declared that the active faults near their nuclear plants would not move at the same time, if it did happen, the impact would be limited. NISA is to look into the evaluation of active faults done by the plants. Hokkaido Electric Power Company
Mihama Nuclear Power Plant
The Mihama Nuclear Power Plant is operated by The Kansai Electric Power Company, Inc. and is in the town of Mihama, Fukui Prefecture, about 320 km west of Tokyo. It is on a site, 520,000 m2 of which 60% is green space. Mihama - 1 was commissioned in 1970. On 9 February 1991, a tube in the steam generator of Unit 2 had failed completely; this triggered a SCRAM with full activation of the Emergency Core Cooling System. A small amount of radiation was released to the outside. On 9 August 2004, an accident occurred in a building housing turbines for the Mihama 3 reactor. Hot water and steam leaking from a broken pipe killed five workers and resulted in six others being injured; the accident had been called Japan's worst nuclear power accident before the crisis at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, in spite of having nothing to do with the nuclear section. The Mihama 3 is an 826 MWe, 3-loop Westinghouse type pressurized water reactor, in service since 1976; the pipe rupture occurred in a 55.9 centimetres outside diameter pipe in the ‘A’ loop condensate system between the fourth feedwater heater and the deaerator, downstream of an orifice for measuring single-phase water flow.
At the time of the secondary piping rupture, 105 workers were preparing for periodic inspections to commence. A review of plant parameters did not uncover any precursor indicators before the accident nor were there any special operations that could have caused the pipe rupture. An investigation concluded that water quality had been maintained since the commissioning of the plant, however the failing pipe had been omitted from an initial inspection plan and quality management systems were ineffective. Mihama-3 restarted in January 2007 after making changes to "reestablish a safety culture" within KEPCO and obtaining permission from Fukui Prefecture and industry regulators. In August 2011 citizens of the prefecture Shiga, at the banks of Lake Biwa, started a lawsuit at the Otsu District Court, asked a court order to prevent the restart of seven reactors operated by Kansai Electric Power Company, in the prefecture Fukui. On 5 March 2012 a group of seismic researchers revealed the possibility of a 7.4 M earthquake under the Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant.
Before this date the Japanese governmental Earthquake Research Committee and Japan Atomic Power had calculated that the Urasoko fault under the plant, combined with other faults connected to it, was around 25 km long and could cause a 7.2M quake and a 1.7 meter displacement. On top of this, the presence of the oceanic faults were not taken into account by NISA and JAP in the assessment of the safety of the Tsuruga nuclear power plant. Analysis of sonic survey and other data provided by Japan Atomic Power analysed by a panel of experts of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency showed the presence of multiple faults existing within 2 to 3 km from the Urasoko fault. According to Sugiyama, a member of this group of scientists, these faults were likely to be activated together, this would extend the length of the Urasoko fault to 35 km. Computer simulations calculating the length of a fault based on its displacement showed the Urasoko fault to be 39 km long, a result close to the length estimated by the sonic survey data, the fault could cause some five meters of displacement when activated together with other faults.
Yuichi Sugiyama, the leader of this research group of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, warned that, as other faults on the south side of the Urasoko fault could become activated together, "The worst-case scenario should be taken into consideration." According to the experts there were many other faults located under one reactor on the west side of the Urasoku fault that could move simultaneously. If this were confirmed, the location of the Tsuruga nuclear plant would be disqualified. On 6 March 2012 NISA asked Japan Atomic Power Co. to reassess the worst-case scenario for earthquakes at the Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant. They were to find out what damage this could do to the buildings on the site, because the Urazoko fault, running around 250 meters from the reactor buildings, could have a serious impact on the earthquake resistance of the power plant. NISA was planning to send similar instructions to two other nuclear power plant operators in the Fukui area: Kansai Electric Power Company, Japan Atomic Energy Agency.
The Mihama Nuclear Power Plant and the Monju fast-breeder reactor could be affected by a possible earthquake caused by the Urazoko fault. Regulation brought about following the March 2011 nuclear disaster forbids the operation of nuclear reactors for more than 40 years. However, plant operators could secure a 20-year operation extension from the Nuclear Regulation Authority if reactors are refitted. For example, these new regulations require utilities to install power cables made from fire-retardant materials. Kansai Electric determined that it was not economical to invest in the costly refits of the two older reactor units given their comparatively small output, decommissioned them in March 2015. Japan's nuclear regulator approved an application to extend the life of Unit 3 through 2036. New regulations would have required the shutdown of Unit 3 by the end of 2016; this is the second such approval granted since the Fukushima disaster. Restart will happen after safety upgrades are completed by March 2020 and will cost about 165 billion yen.
The upgrades involve other measures. Mihama Nuclear Power Plant Japanese nuclear operator to shut 11 plants Worst Japanese Nuclear Accident Claims Fifth Life
Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
During the final stage of World War II, the United States detonated two nuclear weapons over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9, 1945, respectively. The United States dropped the bombs after obtaining the consent of the United Kingdom, as required by the Quebec Agreement; the two bombings killed 129,000 -- 226,000 people. They remain the only use of nuclear weapons in the history of armed conflict. In the final year of the war, the Allies prepared for what was anticipated to be a costly invasion of the Japanese mainland; this undertaking was preceded by a conventional and firebombing campaign that devastated 67 Japanese cities. The war in Europe had concluded when Germany signed its instrument of surrender on May 8, 1945; as the Allies turned their full attention to the Pacific War, the Japanese faced the same fate. The Allies called for the unconditional surrender of the Imperial Japanese armed forces in the Potsdam Declaration on July 26, 1945—the alternative being "prompt and utter destruction".
The Japanese ignored the war continued. By August 1945, the Allies' Manhattan Project had produced two types of atomic bombs, the 509th Composite Group of the United States Army Air Forces was equipped with the specialized Silverplate version of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress that could deliver them from Tinian in the Mariana Islands. Orders for atomic bombs to be used on four Japanese cities were issued on July 25. On August 6, one of the modified B-29s dropped a uranium gun-type bomb on Hiroshima. Three days on August 9, a plutonium implosion bomb was dropped by another B-29 on Nagasaki; the bombs devastated their targets. Over the next two to four months, the acute effects of the atomic bombings killed 90,000–146,000 people in Hiroshima and 39,000–80,000 people in Nagasaki. Large numbers of people continued to die from the effects of burns, radiation sickness, other injuries, compounded by illness and malnutrition, for many months afterward. In both cities, most of the dead were civilians. Japan announced its surrender to the Allies on August 15, six days after the bombing of Nagasaki and the Soviet Union's declaration of war.
On September 2, the Japanese government signed the instrument of surrender ending World War II. The effects of the bombings on the social and political character of subsequent world history and popular culture has been studied extensively, the ethical and legal justification for the bombings is still debated to this day. In 1945, the Pacific War between the Empire of Japan and the Allies entered its fourth year. Most Japanese military units fought fiercely, ensuring that the Allied victory would come at an enormous cost; the 1.25 million battle casualties incurred in total by the United States in World War II included both military personnel killed in action and wounded in action. Nearly one million of the casualties occurred during the last year of the war, from June 1944 to June 1945. In December 1944, American battle casualties hit an all-time monthly high of 88,000 as a result of the German Ardennes Offensive. America's reserves of manpower were running out. Deferments for groups such as agricultural workers were tightened, there was consideration of drafting women.
At the same time, the public was becoming war-weary, demanding that long-serving servicemen be sent home. In the Pacific, the Allies returned to the Philippines, recaptured Burma, invaded Borneo. Offensives were undertaken to reduce the Japanese forces remaining in Bougainville, New Guinea and the Philippines. In April 1945, American forces landed on Okinawa. Along the way, the ratio of Japanese to American casualties dropped from 5:1 in the Philippines to 2:1 on Okinawa. Although some Japanese soldiers were taken prisoner, most fought until they were killed or committed suicide. Nearly 99% of the 21,000 defenders of Iwo Jima were killed. Of the 117,000 Okinawan and Japanese troops defending Okinawa in April–June 1945, 94% were killed; as the Allies advanced towards Japan, conditions became worse for the Japanese people. Japan's merchant fleet declined from 5,250,000 gross tons in 1941 to 1,560,000 tons in March 1945, 557,000 tons in August 1945. Lack of raw materials forced the Japanese war economy into a steep decline after the middle of 1944.
The civilian economy, which had deteriorated throughout the war, reached disastrous levels by the middle of 1945. The loss of shipping affected the fishing fleet, the 1945 catch was only 22% of that in 1941; the 1945 rice harvest was the worst since 1909, hunger and malnutrition became widespread. U. S. industrial production was overwhelmingly superior to Japan's. By 1943, the U. S. produced 100,000 aircraft a year, compared to Japan's production of 70,000 for the entire war. By the middle of 1944, the U. S. had a hundred aircraft carriers in the Pacific, far more than Japan's twenty-five for the entire war. In February 1945, Prince Fumimaro Konoe advised Emperor Hirohito that defeat was inevitable, urged him to abdicate. Before the surrender of Nazi Germany on May 8, 1945, plans were underway for the largest operation of the Pacific War, Operation Downfall, the Allied invasion of Japan; the operation had two parts: Operation Coronet. Set to begin in October 1945, Olympic involved a series of landings by the U.
S. Sixth Army intended to capture the southern third of the southernmost main Japanese island, Kyūshū. Operation Olympic was to be followed in March 1946 by Operation Coronet, the capture of t