Fukushima disaster fat cats profit from taxpayers’ billions

TEPCO, cartoon

From AFP news agency:

Fukushima operator books USD 4.3 bn profit on bailout

Tokyo, April 30, 2014

Last Updated at 17:13 IST

The operator of Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant said today it booked a USD 4.3 billion annual net profit owing to an electricity rate hike and a massive government bailout following the 2011 disaster.

Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) was teetering on the brink as cleanup and compensation costs stoked huge losses and threatened to collapse the sprawling utility until Tokyo stepped with a multi-billion dollar rescue.

The company at the centre of the worst nuclear accident in a generation said it earned 438.65 billion yen (USD 4.3 billion) in the fiscal year to March, compared with a net loss of 685.3 billion yen in the same period a year earlier.

Sales rose 11.0 per cent to 6.63 trillion yen, it said.

The company’s results got a boost from a rate hike, and helped offset a decline in the amount of electricity TEPCO sold owing to warmer-than-usual winter weather, it said.

It also booked a special gain of 1.8 trillion yen based on funds the company received from a government-backed bailout fund as well as asset sales.

The Fukushima plant’s cooling systems were swamped by the 2011 tsunami, sparking reactor meltdowns and radiation leaks.

Tens of thousands of people were evacuated from around the plant with decommissioning of the site expected to take decades.

Japan and France to promote fast breeder reactors — Enformable Nuclear News; falsified inspections suspected at Monju fast-breeder reactor — The Japan Times: here.

Large street protests and a hunger strike by a 72-year-old former opposition leader prompted Taiwan’s government last week to halt construction of a nuclear plant 20 miles outside Taipei. Though the facility is three decades in the making and more than 90% complete, protesters insist that Taiwan is too earthquake-prone given its position on the Pacific Rim’s “ring of fire”: here.

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15 thoughts on “Fukushima disaster fat cats profit from taxpayers’ billions

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