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Japan To Begin Restarting Idled Nuclear Power Plants

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Steven Hayward, Powerline

Japan will begin restarting its idled nuclear plants after new safety guidelines are in place later this year, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Thursday, moving to ensure a stable energy supply despite public safety concerns after the Fukushima disaster.

It’s been a bad couple of weeks for the fruit-juice vegan energy set. Where to begin? How about Japan, which went through the entirely predictable cycle with regard to its nuclear power in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster of two years ago.  You can follow the cycle in the hilarious New York Times headlines:

Japan Sets Policy to Phase Out Nuclear Power Plants by 2040 (Sept. 12, 2012)

Then, five days later:

Japan, Under Pressure, Backs Off Plan to Phase Out Nuclear Power by 2040 (September 19, 2012)

Turns out someone had a calculator, looked at the cost, and started saying, “never mind.”  And so just five days ago:

Japan to Begin Restarting Idled Nuclear Plants, Leader Says.

“Still, by making the promise in front of the Diet, Mr. Abe indicated in the strongest way yet that he planned to move ahead with a campaign pledge to reverse his predecessor’s hopes that Japan would begin weaning itself off nuclear energy.”

At the other end of the Eurasian land mass, Germany, which has no nuclear power plants exposed to tsunami risk, says it intends to continue with its plans to shut down its nuclear power plants over the next decade just to be safe. You never know when you might get a land tsunami, like that old Saturday Night Live land shark.

So how is Germany going to make up the power gap?  According to Bloomberg News, the old-fashioned way—with new coal-fired power plants.  Another triumph for the climate campaign!

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