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Fukushima Daiichi NPS Prompt Report 2014


TOKYO, February 3, 2014 - Strong progress on several fronts at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station highlight the latest progress report from the plant's owner, the Tokyo Electric Power Company, on the implementation of its Nuclear Safety Reform Plan.

The Plan, which covers all three of the company's nuclear power stations, was adopted in the aftermath of the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami that crippled the Fukushima Daiichi facility and destroyed four of its six generating units.

Commenting on his receipt of the report, Dr. Dale Klein - the former Chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission who chairs TEPCO's Nuclear Reform Monitoring Committee - said the report, which covers the period from October-December 2013, reveals "steady progress," particularly with regard to the Unit 4 fuel removal. He emphasized, however, that "this is a time for TEPCO to remain vigilant and not allow these successes to lull it into complacency. A long-term water solution remains to be agreed upon, and that will require some difficult decisions. And continuing efforts need to be made to inculcate a true safety culture."

Lady Barbara Judge CBE, the former Chairman of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, who is Deputy Chairman of the Nuclear Reform Monitoring Committee, contrasted the aspirations of the previous progress report with the actions reported by the current one. She particularly noted that "the Nuclear Safety Oversight Office is now fully engaged, monitoring the line organization, making suggestions which are being listened to and implemented" and also praised TEPCO for "real change" in communications, including improvements in press communications and the hiring of a new leader of the Social Communication office. Like Dr. Klein, she said "there is a long way to go" in what she described as the "journey" toward a safety culture.

Progress at all Three Installations

In addition to addressing developments at the stricken Daiichi facility, the report also described developments at two others: Fukushima Daini, a coastal facility to the south of the Daiichi plant that escaped significant damage from the tsunami but which has been placed in "cold shutdown" since that event, and Kashiwazaki-Kariwa (KK), the world's largest nuclear generating facility, which the company has sought permission from Japanese regulators to restart.

It also reports on the progress of management reforms instituted after the accident. Highlights of the report include:

-Safe removal of nuclear fuel from Fukushima Daiichi's Unit 4. Of the 202 fresh fuel and 1,331 spent fuel assemblies in the unit when the process began, 22 fresh fuel and 110 spent fuel assemblies have been removed, all of them safely and without incident. The process will be completed by the end of this year.

-Many steps were taken during the quarter to improve management of contaminated water at Fukushima Daiichi, ranging from improvements to storage tanks to improved administrative facilities.

-Units 5 and 6 at Fukushima Daiichi, which were undamaged by the tsunami, are being converted into research centers that will aid in the decontamination efforts at the four damaged units.

-Efforts intended to lead to the restart of KK are progressing, including detailed review of a wide variety of safety features related to earthquakes, tsunamis, fire, flooding, and other potential hazards.

-Reviews and training of managers, including the nuclear leadership, took place, including training on safety culture, risk communications, and other areas.

An English-language version of the report, including an executive summary, may be downloaded at

Comments from Dr. Dale Klein for TEPCO Progress report is posted at the Nuclear Reform Monitoring Committee homepage.

Video comments from Lady Barbara Judge CBE for TEPCO Progress report is also posted at the Nuclear Reform Monitoring Committee homepage.

TEPCO, Inc. is a provider of electricity to the Kanto region, which includes Tokyo and Yokohama. The company is headquartered in Tokyo. The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station was struck by a tsunami after an earthquake that occurred in March 2011. For more information, please go to

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