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2012年5月 6日 (日)

全原発停止 これでは夏の電力が不足する

The Yomiuri Shimbun (May. 6, 2012)
Summer power shortage feared if situation remains unchanged
全原発停止 これでは夏の電力が不足する(5月5日付・読売社説)

The No. 3 reactor of Hokkaido Electric Power Co.'s Tomari nuclear power plant, which has been the only reactor operating in Japan, is scheduled to stop on May 5.
 国内で1基だけ稼働している北海道電力泊原子力発電所3号機が5日、運転を停止する。

It is an abnormal situation in which the operations of all 50 reactors in Japan are stopped and 30 percent of the nation's electricity sources is lost.
全国50基の原発がすべて止まり、全電源の3割が失われる異常事態だ。

The number of reactors in operation will be zero in Japan for the first time since 1970--42 years ago--when there were only two reactors in the nation.
 原発の稼働がゼロになるのは、原発がわずか2基だった1970年以来、42年ぶりである。

This has come about because reactors suspended for regular check-ups cannot be restarted even after their inspections are completed due to negative effects of the crisis at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
 東京電力福島第一原発の事故の影響で、定期検査で止めた原発を、検査を終えた後も再稼働できなくなっていることが原因だ。

It is important to reconfirm the safety of the reactors based on lessons learned from the crisis. However, we cannot overlook the fact that the government's nuclear power policy has taken a winding course and delayed procedures for the restart.
 事故の教訓を踏まえ、原発の安全性を再確認するのは重要だ。だが、政府の原子力政策が迷走し、再稼働への手続きにブレーキをかけた点は看過できない。

The government's impromptu reactions, such as former Prime Minister Naoto Kan's surprise declaration of denuclearization, have amplified public distrust against nuclear power generation. Scandals involving utility companies and the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, such as a case involving faked e-mails, also slowed down restart procedures.
 菅前首相による突然の「脱原発宣言」など場当たり的な対応は、原発への不信を増幅させた。「やらせメール問題」をはじめ、電力会社や原子力安全・保安院の不祥事も、足を引っ張った。

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Restart of Oi reactors delayed

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and others in mid-April confirmed the safety of the Nos. 3 and 4 reactors at Kansai Electric Power Co.'s Oi nuclear power plant under new criteria, and concluded it is appropriate to restart them.
 野田首相らは4月中旬、新たな判断基準で関西電力大飯原発3、4号機の安全を確認し、再稼働は妥当だと判断した。

However, they failed to obtain the understanding of local communities hosting the reactors and are still having difficulty reaching a consensus with them. Inconsistent remarks by Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano also had a profound effect on this.
しかし、地元の理解を得られず、調整はなお難航している。枝野経済産業相の発言がぶれた影響も大きい。

If the current situation continues, it will not be possible for the reactors to be restarted in time for summer, when the nation's demand for electricity balloons.
 このままでは電力需要が膨らむ夏に間に合わない恐れがある。

The service area of Kansai Electric, where the Oi power plant is located, is particularly dependent on nuclear power generation. If the plant's reactors do not resume operations, the area will see an electricity shortage of about 15 percent at a time when temperatures are very high. A legally binding obligation to save electricity or rolling blackouts might become necessary.
 特に大飯原発のある関電管内は原発依存度が高い。再稼働しないと、猛暑時の電力不足は約15%にのぼるという。法律による節電の義務づけや計画停電が、必要になるかもしれない。

The prime minister should exercise leadership as the foremost relevant government official and do his best to convince local communities regarding the restart of the Oi nuclear power plant.
 首相が先頭に立ち、大飯原発の再稼働実現に向け、地元の説得に全力を挙げるべきだ。

The Kansai region is not the only area expected to see a serious electricity shortage. All parts of the nation will be walking a tightrope regarding the balance of electricity supply and demand this summer.
 深刻さは関西にとどまらない。節電などの効果を入れても、全国の夏の電力需給は綱渡りだ。

The situation is far harsher than last summer, when more than 15 reactors were in operation. It is dangerous to take the rosy view that the expected shortages can be overcome by saving electricity like last summer.
15基以上の原発が動いていた去年に比べてはるかに厳しい。昨夏のように、節電すれば乗り切れる、と楽観するのは危険である。

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Avoid power shortages

In a survey conducted last month by the Japan Business Federation (Keidanren), 70 percent of manufacturing companies said they would reduce production if they have concerns about a stable power supply.
 経団連が先月に実施した調査では、製造業の7割が電力供給に不安があれば減産すると答えた。

Fuel costs for thermal power generation, which substitutes for nuclear power generation, are expected to be 3 trillion yen or 4 trillion yen more per year in the nation, causing concerns about additional hikes in electricity prices. An electricity shortage will cool down the economy and exacerbate the hollowing-out of industries.
 原発を代替する火力発電の燃料費は、全国で年3~4兆円も余計にかかる見込みで、電力料金のさらなる値上げも懸念される。電力不足が景気を冷やし、産業空洞化に拍車をかけることになろう。

If the government forces aggressive power-saving targets on ordinary households, the extreme heat of midsummer would threaten the health of elderly and infirm citizens.
 厳しい節電目標を家庭に強いれば、真夏の暑さが高齢者など弱者の健康を損なう恐れがある。

It is also a big problem that the delay in creation of a new nuclear regulatory agency has suspended procedures to restart reactors of nuclear power plants other than the Oi plant.
 原子力規制庁の設立が遅れ、大飯以外の再稼働手続きがストップしているのも大きな問題だ。

The ruling and opposition parties must advance discussions on creation of the envisaged agency and speed up the establishment of a new system in charge of examining conditions to restart reactors.
 与野党は規制庁設置を巡る協議を進め、再稼働の審査にあたる新体制作りを急がねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, May 5, 2012)
(2012年5月5日01時39分  読売新聞)

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