Monday, April 8, 2013

Japan Spent 100 Billion Yen for Plutonium and Mox Fuel

Majia here: Japan shipped used nuclear fuel to the UK, beginning in 2010, for reprocessing to extract plutonium that could be stored and incorporated into Mox fuel. The cost for this reprocessing is rising because the British facility is LEAKING. The Asahi covers the story:

Spent nuclear fuel reprocessing costs nearly triples, a blow to utilities By SHIN MATSUURA/ Staff Writer April 08, 2013

[Excerpted] The cost for overseas reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel from Japanese nuclear power stations has nearly tripled since 1995 because of problems at a contracted British plant, which is likely to further hurt utilities and be passed along in rate hikes for electricity users.

The cost surged apparently because the plant is plagued with a slew of problems, including leakage of waste liquid.

The overall cost for reprocessing spent nuclear fuel into 790 more containers of waste [in the UK since 2010] that are scheduled to be returned to Japan is expected to be around 100 billion yen.

A rise in reprocessing costs is will strain utilities’ balance sheets further, and to be passed on to consumers, according to experts. [END]

Majia here: The article also explains that nuclear waste from the reprocessing process is shipped back to Japan.

It is not clear from the article whether the plutonium extracted in the reprocessing is sent back to Japan in the form of newly finished plutonium-enriched fuel or whether it is sent back to Japan in its extracted form.

Japan hopes that the Rokkasho reprocessing plant will fulfill domestically all plutonium extraction purposes.

However, Japan has massive stockpiles of plutonium. Why does it need more?

The exorbitant costs and risks associated with reprocessing spent fuel are mind boggling.Those costs and risks are being shifted to the people of Japan and elsewhere as the nuclear industry bears no legal responsibility for transnational harms.

  1. Majia's Blog: Why Does Japan Insist on Reprocessing Nuclear Fuel?
    Sep 16, 2012 – "I am not considering changing (construction plans for) nuclear power plants for which the industry ministry has given the go-ahead," Edano ...
  2. Majia's Blog: Reprocessing Nuclear Fuel to Continue in Japan?
    May 26, 2012 – MAJIA HERE: Why would Japan want to continue re-processing nuclear fuel? There are ... ...
  3. Majia's Blog: More on Japan's Insistence on Re-Processing Nuclear ...
    Sunday, December 2, 2012. More on Japan's Insistence on Re-Processing Nuclear Fuel. Japan's Nuclear Mistake By FRANK N. VON HIPPEL and MASAFUMI ...
  4. Majia's Blog: Latest Update on Japan's Proposal to Re-Start Re ...
    May 29, 2012 – ... MAJIA HERE: The committee that approved the re-processing of fuel to ...
  5. Majia's Blog: Rokkasho Reprocessing Plant (Which Produces ...
    Jun 26, 2012 – It probably comes down to the Rokkasho Reprocessing Plant," said a bureaucrat with whom I've been acquainted for years. "If the country ...
  6. Majia's Blog: Why does Japan's Plutonium Stockpiling Matter?
    Jun 18, 2012 – Majia here: So Japan has stockpiles of plutonium that are about 40% .... ..

1 comment:

  1. yes, I've been struggling with the "why" question too: another way to squeeze last drop of profit out of their demonic industry? and/or depleted uranium production? might be a clue in this: "Nuclear energy and the military are two sides of the same coin"


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