Sendai nuclear plant’s host town approves restart

A town in Japan was the first to approve restart of a nuclear power plant, three years after all nuclear capacity was shut down in the country.

A majority of the assembly members in Satsumasendai, the town that hosts the Sendai nuclear power plant, cleared the plant for restart, according to Reuters. The Kyushu Electric-operated plant is a major economic provider for the town. The plant is not likely to restart before early 2015 as it must still undergo operational safety checks. Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority granted security clearance for the plant in September.

All 48 reactors were shut down in 2012 following the 2011 nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Since the reactors were shut down, the operating companies have had to import electricity or rely heavily on fossil fueled-power plants. Some, including Kyushu Electric, have asked the Development Bank of Japan for millions of dollars in bailouts.

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