SEARCH BLOG: ENERGY
From the BBC:
Japan is switching off its last working nuclear reactor, as part of the safety drive since the March 2011 tsunami triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima plant.
The third reactor at the Tomari plant, in Hokkaido prefecture, is shutting down for routine maintenance.
It leaves Japan without energy from atomic power for the first time for more than 40 years.
Until last year, Japan got 30% of its power from nuclear energy.
Hundreds of people marched through Tokyo, waving banners to celebrate what they hope will be the end of nuclear power in Japan.The story title is a bit misleading because the shutdown is for maintenance, not mothballing.
image] Regardless, Japan's experience with an old-style, poorly sited nuclear plan where back-up and safety systems failed are all that is needed to turn public opinion against nuclear power. That leaves Japan in quite a predicament. There is a likelihood of power shortages and businesses could be severely affected by that. Solar and wind power are not viable options and natural gas would have to be imported to make up the difference... once power plants could be built.
But the real kicker is that Japan is heavily dependent on oil for its power and the loss of nuclear power results in the most expensive source of electrical power having to take up the slack.
The U.S., unlike Japan, is rich in fuel sources for electricity. But having the sources available and having the freedom to use those sources is another issue. Anthony Watt's blog has an expose into the continuing enervation of America.