JAPAN MOVES CLOSER TO RESTARTING NUCLEAR REACTORS
Eric Talmadge (AP)
Bloomberg Businessweek, June 15, 2012
Japan moved closer Thursday to restarting nuclear reactors for the first time since last year's earthquake and tsunami led to a nationwide shutdown after a mayor gave his support to a plan to bring two of them back online.
All 50 of Japan's workable reactors are offline because of safety concerns or for maintenance since the March 11 disaster touched off a crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant. Public opposition to nuclear power remains high, even though the government has been pressing for the restart of reactors because it says nuclear energy is crucial to Japan's economy.
Power companies have warned of shortages in the months ahead, as demand reaches its summer peak.
Work to restart two reactors in the western town of Ohi, which are the first ready to resume generating power, could begin as soon as this weekend now that the mayor signed off on the plan. Once the work begins, it takes about three weeks to get a reactor operating at full capacity.
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