Restarts threaten to increase amount of deadly MOX at Takahama plant to 18.5 tons via The Japan Times

Restarting a second reactor at the Takahama nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture will raise the amount of highly toxic spent mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel present there to an estimated 18.5 tons, Jiji Press has learned.

The plant run by Kansai Electric Power Co. in the town of Takahama had 5.3 tons of MOX — a blend of uranium and plutonium extracted from spent nuclear fuel — there before Friday’s restart of the No. 3 reactor.


Takahama No. 3 is slated to use 24 units of MOX, according to Kansai Electric. Reactor 4 will use four units. Each fuel unit weighs about 660 kg, according to statistics from the Finance Ministry and other data.

Kepco imported 12 French-made MOX units in June 2010 and an additional 20 in June 2013. The utility’s Genkai plant in Saga Prefecture and Shikoku Electric Power Co.’s Ikata plant in Ehime Prefecture have about 10.7 tons of spent MOX each — more than any other commercial nuclear plants in japan.

Among noncommercial facilities, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency currently has 63.9 tons stored at Fugen, an advanced converter reactor in Fukui, 23.1 tons at its nuclear fuel reprocessing facility in Ibaraki Prefecture, and 6.1 tons at the experimental Monju fast-breeder reactor in Fukui.

Takahama No. 3 is the nation’s third reactor to be rebooted under new safety standards compiled since the Fukushima nuclear disaster began in March 2011.

Kansai Electric plans to reactivate Takahama’s No. 4 reactor later this month.

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