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Tepco to Raise Electricity Charges for Corporate Customers via Bloomberg

Tepco to Raise Electricity Charges for Corporate Customers
Dec. 22 (Bloomberg) —

Co. plans to raise electricity rates for companies from April to help offset the rising costs of fuel to run thermal power plants after the Fukushima disaster shut down most of its nuclear reactors.

The utility known as Tepco will announce the size of the increase in January, it said in a statement. It will also seek approval from the government to raise tariffs for households “as soon as possible,” according to the statement.

Tepco estimates its fuel costs will rise by 830 billion yen ($10.6 billion) to 2.31 trillion yen in the year ending March 2012. Only two of the company’s 17 nuclear reactors are now running after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami wrecked its Dai-Ichi plant. Other reactors closed for maintenance haven’t been approved for restart because of safety concerns. Tepco supplies 29 million companies and households in the Tokyo area.

“It is a matter of great urgency for us to end this constant deficit financing caused by rising fuel costs,” Tepco President Toshio Nishizawa told reporters in Tokyo today. “We need to properly work on this matter because we could be sued by shareholders if we don’t do anything when it is foreseeable the company cannot maintain its operations.”

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9 Responses

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  1. mfisch says

    Why does Tepco still even exist? Basically, this is passing on the bill for Fukushima to the population when the population is already paying dearly, both in the form of monetary compensation and health risks.

  2. entrepreneur says

    Nuclear plant should not be eliminated in future in Japan. Besides we need nuclear plants all over the world. The generation of electricity by nuclear plant is very reasonable. It is the cheapest method to generate electoricity. And we have to concern about global warming problem. Thermal electric power plant let off carbon dioxicide. And recently oil cost is incleasing. The maintain cost of thermal electric power plant is expenchive. It it certainly that thermal electric power is more expensive than nuclear power plant. What do you think? Don’t you need nuclear power plant in future? Please write your opinion.

    • mfisch says

      Dear entrepreneur,
      Thank you for your intrest and reply to the article and my comment. It is great to get such feedback. The argument you make is what we often hear about the benefits of nuclear power versus the problems of coal or oil. But are these really the only alternatives? If so, I find it hard to accept since basically it is a choice between death by mercury and other fossil fuel pollutants versus death by radiation. Yes, nuclear power may seem safe if we think in terms of probabilities. But what happens if we think instead in terms of consequences. That is, if there is only a 5% probability that an accident will occur, I imagine that many people would accept that as reasonable. However, if we consider that the consequence of such an accident is contamination of the global food chain, and evacuation of large areas of land for a period that is so long that it might as well be forever, then it is hard to justify that 5%. As we have seen from the many nuclear accidents that have taken place (Ontario and England in the 1950s, Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Fukushima… and these are just the ones we know about) the possibility of operation without accident is an illusion. One should also always remember that nuclear power plants don’t just produce energy. They produce capital. And their centralized structure makes them very good at producing capital. There are definite alternatives that have no consequences in the event of an accident, like wind or solar. The problem, it seems, is that wind and solar are not so easily centralized and thus not such massive producers of capital.

  3. norma field says

    And even their inexpensiveness has been exaggerated; it can only be claimed because of massive government subsidies. In the U.S., no private insurer will insure them. We have to ask, why?

    And, once an accident occurs, the costs of “clean-up” or “decontamination” (often the mere transport of contamination from one place to another) are astronomical, even when the government behaves in the minimalist way that the Japanese government has adopted.

  4. entrepreneur says

    Thank you for your comment. I would like to write about technology progress of nuclear power.
    We have to consider the safety technology progress of nuclear power before stop using nuclear power plant. The technology of Fukushima’s nuclear plant was very old. That was 40 years ago. Now the technology was improved. We have technology that does not need water to cool the plant. In fact china introduced this technology to their nuclear plant. They do not need to constract plants along sea coast. Probably you have already known that Fukushima’s plant was not broken by earthquake but Tsunami. If nuclear plant is far from sea, plant will not be broken. We can say that the probability of accident is very low.

  5. mfisch says

    Dear entrepreneur,
    To borrow from Paul Virilio: When you invent an airplane, you also invent the airplane crash, when you invent a car, you invent the car crash, and when you invent nuclear power, you invent the nuclear accident. There is no escape from this logic, no progressive rationalization of technology and culture that will lead to a world without technological accidents. Virilio aside, I’d like to suggest the book Mobilising Modernity: The nuclear moment by Ian Welsh.

  6. entrepreneur says

    Thank you for your comment.
    Paul Virilio’s sentence is very valuable to think. The technologies of airplane, car, nuclear are very important for us. We should respect and appreciate these technologies. We have to admit that we need them to prosper our life and society. We should not avoid them to think only demerit. We have to concentrate on reducing demerit.
    In Japan 4,000 people die by car accident a year , 20 people die by airplane a year , o.25 people die by nuclear accident a year on average. Why do we try to eliminate nuclear power plant? Why do not try to eliminate car and airplane? We can make progress safe technology much further and reduce demerits.

  7. mfisch says

    Dear Entrepreneur,
    Thank you this has been a good discussion. And while such correspondence might not solve all the world’s problems, it is helpful to have such a space to think. In closing, I just want to add a quick response to what you wrote above and remind you that .25 is an extremely low guestimate that does not take into account the long term effects of exposure to low level radiation. As far has how many people will lose their health and lives as a result of Fukushima, how much of the ecosystem will be destroyed and how many generations will suffer, no one knows. If we take Chernobyl as the example, officially speaking something like only 64 people died, when actually the number is in the tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands. No one says we should live without technology. But we must develop a different relationship to technology. Anyhow, thank you again. This has been a good discussion and I wish you the best of luck with your research.

  8. entrepreneur says

    Thank you for your comment.
    >4,000 people die by car accident a year , 20 people die by airplane a year , >o.25 people die by nuclear accident a year on average
    Actually these numbers are focused on only death toll as you said. We have to consider people who were injured by car, airplane,nuclear accident. If we contain these people, the number will increase much furhter. And we have to start trying to improve these problems. We need safer technology than now receiving the full benefit of current technology.
    Anyhow It was great time to discuss about this issues having common awareness. Thank you very much for your time.



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