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5 nuclear plants’ cooling systems may fail during volcanic eruptions via Japan Today

Five nuclear power plants that have passed safety clearances by Japan’s nuclear safety watchdog may be at risk of having their cooling systems crippled during huge eruptions of nearby volcanoes, the watchdog said.

The five plants are the Sendai power plant operated by Kyushu Electric Power Co in Kagoshima Prefecture, the Mihama plant and Oi plant, both in Fukui Prefecture and run by Kansai Electric Power Co, the Ikata plant in Ehime Prefecture run by Shikoku Electric Power Co, and the Genkai plant in Saga Prefecture run by Kyushu Electric.

Additional research and data have revealed that the possible concentration of volcanic ash from huge eruptions could soar up to around 100 times that previously estimated. The findings emerged only after screenings of the plant by the Nuclear Regulation Authority.


It now aims to raise the density level of volcanic ash that can affect nuclear plants by 100 times the current level, while pressing utilities to upgrade their air filters.

The No. 3 reactor at Ikata plant and Nos. 3 and 4 reactors at Genkai plant top the list of those most likely to be affected by clogged filters.

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