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People gather in Tokyo to celebrate last nuclear-reactor's switch off

05-06-2012 14:10 BJT

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Japan has become nuclear generated electricity free for the first time in four decades. The move come as one of three reactors at the Tomari nuclear plant on the northern island of Hokkaido went offline on Saturday. Thousands of Japanese gathered in central Tokyo to celebrate the switch off of Japan's last operating nuclear reactor.

Japan is now nuclear Power-free. This comes amid growing public concerns about the safety of nuclear technology. Power generation at the Hokkaido Electric Power Co. was gradually being reduced on Saturday. All operations ended at 11 p.m. local time. The Hokkaido Tomari plant has three reactors, but the other two had been halted earlier.

Hokkaido Electric Power Co.'s Tomari nuclear power plant is seen
in Tomari town on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, in this
picture taken by Kyodo May 5, 2012.

After the March 11 2012 earthquake and tsunami caused meltdowns at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, none of the country's other reactors that have been stopped for checkups have been restarted.

Responses from people living near the nuclear plants have been mixed, with some wanting them back, because of jobs, subsidies and other benefits to the local economy. But the majority says it is a good move.

Satoshi Kamata, journalist, said, "3/11 was one of the biggest days to remember in the history of Japan, and I think today 5/5 will be a memorable day for the start of Japan’s no nuclear days."

Hokkaido Electric Power Co.'s Tomari nuclear power plant is seen in Tomari town
on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, in this picture taken by Kyodo on
April 16, 2008.

A Tokyo resident said, "I know we have been relying on nuclear power, but when I think about my child’s future I would rather have no nuclear plants."

It is still unknown when Japan will restart the nuclear power reactors. It now requires new durability tests to see if facilities can withstand earthquakes and tsunamis while the approval of local residents is also required to restart reactors.

A monitor shows the planned power reduction of Hokkaido Electric Power Co.'s
Tomari nuclear power plant at its headquarters' central power supply control
center in Sapporo, in the northern part of Japan May 5, 2012.

Protesters hold anti-nuclear signs at a rally appealing to the Japanese government
to put an end to nuclear power in Tokyo May, 5, 2012.

 

Editor:Bai Yang |Source: CNTV.CN

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