In response to the Fukushima Daiichi accidents that occurred as a result of Japan’s 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the European Union has put forward new reactor safety rules.
These rules state that intensive reactor inspections must be carried out by specific EU coordinated teams every six years. In addition to this, there must be another safety review every 10 years, as well as maintenance of robust emergency response centers and the development of emergency communications plans.
In Japan, the Tokyo Electric Power Co. has revised its schedule for removing fuel from damaged reactors and is in the process of building up more specifics in its plan for decommissioning Fukushima Daiichi.
Removing damaged fuel from the cores of units 1 through 3 has been tentatively scheduled for 2020 to 2021 but should more time-consuming removal techniques be required, work could begin between 2022 and 2024, the Asahi Shimbun newspaper reported last week. The overall process of entirely decommissioning the site is still expected to take 30 to 40 years.