Kyushu Electric To Shutter Genkai 2

The Kyushu Electric Power Company said Wednesday that it would not restart Genkai Nuclear Power United No. 2, based on the difficulties associated with bringing the unit up to post-Fukushima Dai-ichi accident safety standards.

Genkai NPP“Genkai No. 2 will reach the end of its operation period in March 2021,” the company said, referring to its 40-year operation license. To expand the operating period, an application needs to be submitted before March 31, 2020. “

Kyushu said the company considered applying for a license extension for the 559 MWe pressurized light water reactor, which began commercial operations in March 1981. However, “prospects for its output and remaining commercial operation period, has led to the decision not to commence the approval procedure on the extension of the operating period,” the company said in an online news bulletin.

The World Nuclear Association noted that the reactor was the tenth Japanese reactor with life left in it that companies have decided to retire rather than pay the costs of post-Fukushima Dai-ichi upgrades. Among the plants to be decommissioned is Genkai Unit 1.

Kyushu first applied for a license to construct Genkai Unit 2 in August 1974. Construction began June 12, 1976. Commercial operations began in 1981 and the plant achieved a utilization rate of 81.4 percent since then.

The reactor has been shut down since January 2011, just prior to the March 11, 2011 earthquake and subsequent accident at Fukushima. In its lifetime, Genkai No. 2 produced 120 billion kWh. 

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