The fact is that the economic benefits of nuclear power have been losing their shine. Because of the sharp hike in safety standards imposed by the Nuclear Regulation Authority after the Fukushima disaster, exorbitant safety upgrades nearly equal in cost to building a new reactor are being installed at each site. To get a return on investment, this intensive capital spending will require long-term operation and high utilization rates, but the need to get local consent to operate and to respond to dozens of lawsuits from anti-nuclear residents is making stable operations difficult. Reactor operations are also capped at 60 years. Nuclear power could potentially be a source of cheap electricity, depending on the utilization rate and other conditions, but there’s also a possibility it won’t.
Japan Times 16th July 2019 read more »