On 31 July 2018, Japan’s Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC) issued a new policy paper, The Basic Principles on Japan’s Utilization of Plutonium, which for the first time, stated that “Japan will reduce the size of its plutonium stockpile.” A similar statement was included in the new Strategic Energy Plan (in Japanese) by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) that was adopted on 3 July by the Cabinet of the Japanese government. Japan’s plutonium stockpile, according to the data released by the JAEC at the same time as the new policy, is about 47.3 tons of plutonium (as of the end of 2017), of which 36.7 tons is overseas (21.2 tons in UK and 15.5 tons in France) and 10.5 tons in Japan. The Rokkasho reprocessing plant, with a design separation capacity of 8 tons of plutonium per year, on which stated construction in 1993, is currently planned to be completed in 2021. Plans call for the J-MOX plant to be completed in 2022 to turn this plutonium into MOX fuel for light water (LWR) nuclear power reactors.
IPFM 20th Aug 2018 read more »