Japan: 1,180 MW nuclear reactor back online on Sunday

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The government quoted worries about the potential summer power shortages as the reason behind the approval to restart reactors No. 3 and No. 4 at the Ohi nuclear plant. The reactor is expected to start electricity generation this Wednesday. Reactor No. 4 will be restarted before the end of this month. The power plant is located in the Fukui prefecture on the west coast.

Even though some businesses welcome the nuclear power to handle electricity shortages, many citizens are unhappy. On Sunday, about a hundred protestors gathered near the Ohi plant with their vehicles to block and protest the restart. This, according to a Kansai spokesperson, did not affect the proceedings. Thousands also protested outside the official residence of Japanese prime minister Yoshihiko Noda in Tokyo on Friday.

Japan had shut down its nuclear reactors for maintenance and safety checks after the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi plant last year. 70 percent of the Japanese voters had already decided against the use of nuclear energy in the country, according to opinion polls.