The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant is a disabled nuclear power plant located on a 3.5-square-kilometre (860-acre) site in the towns of Ōkuma and Futaba in the Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. The plant suffered major damage from the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan on March 11, 2011. The chain of events caused a nuclear meltdown, radiation leaks, and permanently damaged several reactors making them impossible to restart. By political decision, the remaining reactors will not be restarted.
First commissioned in 1971, the plant consists of six boiling water reactors. These light water reactors drove electrical generators with a combined power of 4.7 GWe, making Fukushima Daiichi one of the 15 largest nuclear power stations in the world. Fukushima was the first nuclear plant to be designed, constructed and run in conjunction with General Electric, Boise Cascade and Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO)
The March 2011 disaster disabled the reactor cooling systems, leading to releases of radioactivity and triggering a 30 km evacuation zone surrounding the plant; the releases continue to this day. On April 20, 2011, the Japanese authorities declared the 20 km evacuation zone a no-go area which may only be entered under government supervision.
In April 2012, Units 1-4 were decommissioned. Units 2-4 were decommissioned on April 19, while Unit 1 was the last of these four units to be decommissioned on April 20 at midnight. In December 2013 TEPCO decided none of the undamaged units will reopen.
The sister nuclear plant Fukushima II ("number two"), 12 km (7.5 mi) to the south, is also run by TEPCO. It did not suffer a serious accident during the tsunami and did shut down controlled.
Fukushima Daiichi Links
WNA Report - Detailed report of the incident at Fukushima Daiichi.