Japan nuclear agency urges measures to cut plutonium stocks

July 05, 2018 - 3:08 am

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's nuclear policy-setting body has endorsed a call for stricter management of its fuel recycling program to reduce its plutonium stockpile.

The annual report approved Thursday by the Atomic Energy Commission is a response to intensifying pressure from Washington as it pursues denuclearization in North Korea. It said Japan's fuel recycling program should minimize the amount of plutonium extracted from spent fuel for reuse in power generation to eventually reduce the stockpile.

Japan has promised transparency and pledged not to possess plutonium that does not have a planned use. Japan has faced slow restarts of reactors to burn it amid setbacks from the 2011 Fukushima disaster. The large stockpile of weapons-grade material also raises security concerns.

The commission is compiling guidelines to better manage and reduce the plutonium stockpile.

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