9 Avril 2012
April 9, 2012
Kansai may face 20% power shortage this summer
The Japanese government says Kansai could face a power shortage of 20 percent this summer if the weather stays hot and idled nuclear reactors that serves the region are not restarted.
The government's new estimate on summer power shortages covers areas served by Kansai Electric Power Company.
The estimate says a shortage of up to 19.6 percent is possible if 2 off-line nuclear reactors at the Ohi plant in Fukui Prefecture remain shut and temperatures reach the sweltering levels of summer 2010.
A shortage of up to 17.2 percent is expected if summer temperatures stay within the average range of the past 5 years.
The estimate says the shortage will drop to 7.6 percent if factories operate on weekends instead of some weekdays to spread out power demands, power-saving measures are carried out by households, and temperatures stay at last summer's levels.
It says in each scenario, the rate of shortage may increase by about 2 percentage points if there is trouble at any of the thermal power plants, or if demand peaks in July.
Power shortages in areas served by Kansai Electric would be one of the conditions for the resumption of the utility's currently suspended nuclear reactors.
The government will decide on Monday whether or not to restart these reactors, after considering the estimate, along with a new set of safety standards the utility has submitted.