TOKYO (TR) – Japanese environmental groups and the media have criticized plans to restart two offline nuclear reactors as the government warns the nation could “momentarily” go without nuclear power next month when the country’s only operational reactor is shut down for routine maintenance, Agence France-Presse reported.
Only one of Japan’s 54 nuclear reactors is currently operational. The nation’s industry minister, Yukio Edano, warned of the shutdown Sunday, just two days after Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said the nation needed to restart the reactors at the Oi Nuclear Power Plant to ensure power supply for the summer months.
“The number of nuclear reactors operating across the country may go down to zero, perhaps momentarily, from May 6,” Edano said at a seminar in western Japan, according to AFP.
Japan’s daily Mainichi Shimbun said more checks are needed to ensure the reactors are safe to restart. “It is hard to understand why the government is in such a haste to restart the reactors,” AFP cited the newspaper as saying.