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ECONOMY > Energy

TEPCO to build new breakwater at Fukushima N-plant

Tokyo, Sept. 15 (Jiji Press)–Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. <9501> plans to build a new breakwater as high as 16 meters to protect its disaster-crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant from possible huge tsunamis.

The seawall will be constructed around the plant’s No. 1 to No. 4 reactors, which were heavily damaged in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, by fiscal 2023, according to the plan, announced at a meeting of the Nuclear Regulation Authority on Monday.

The plan is part of safety measures the company mapped out for the plant based on the government’s tsunami estimates.

In April this year, an expert panel under the Cabinet Office said in a report that wide areas along the Pacific in eastern Japan would be hit by tsunamis if a massive earthquake occurs near the Japan Trench.

Calculations made by TEPCO on the basis of the estimates found that tsunamis of 10.8 to 15.3 meters high could reach the nuclear power station in the northeastern Japan prefecture of Fukushima, located on the Pacific coast, in the event of such a temblor, indicating that the 11-meter breakwater currently under construction would be insufficient to protect the plant.

Seeing a need for stronger measures, TEPCO decided to build the new breakwater, which will be about 13 to 16 meters in height and about 600 meters in length, to prevent tsunami water from entering the facility.

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