“Nuclear Garbage” written in a private minutes in Suto-cho, Hokkaido

“Nuclear Garbage” written in a private minutes in Suto-cho, Hokkaido, September 18, 19:24

In The minutes of a private town council meeting obtained by NHK showed that the mayor had initially indicated a policy of deciding to apply for the survey by the end of last month in The town of Suto, Hokkaido, where there have been calls for whether to apply for or reject the selection of a final disposal site for so-called “nuclear waste.”

In the minutes, there are also statements such as “If you ask the townspeople, it will be rather troublesome”, and it seems to call for discussion because you can see the intention of deciding on an application before explaining it to the residents.

Most of Suto-cho is “dark green” on the map.

According to the NUMO Nuclear Power Environment Improvement Organization, an authorized corporation of the country implementing the disposal, the majority of the town of Suto, Hokkaido, is indicated by a “dark green” in the “scientific characteristic map”.

This dark green area is considered to be “relatively likely to confirm scientifically preferred properties and is also preferred in terms of transportation of waste.”

Regarding the selection of a final disposal site for so-called “nuclear waste,” Haruo Kataoka, the mayor of Suto Town, revealed last month that he was considering applying for the “literature survey,” the first stage of the survey.

Mayor” “Happiness of Suto to make good use” The idea of obtaining a grant by applying

NHK obtained the minutes of three meetings of all members of the town council, which had been held privately from February to August.

As a result, at the meeting of all members on February 17, Mr. Kataoka said that he would like to hold a study session of the investigation of the final disposal site with the person in charge of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and that “it does not mean that we will receive the final disposal site” and “I think that it will lead to the happiness of Shouto to make good use of it to secure future financial resources.” It shows the idea that you should apply for a literature survey and get a grant.

Mayor: Initially, we decided to apply as early as possible in August.

Then, at a meeting of all members on the 7th of last month after the actual study session was held, Mayor Kataoka said, “I would like to plan as soon as possible what should be the policy of Suto-cho.” If we were to get ahead of ours, we wouldn’t be able to get the most out of it,” he said, noting that he had originally decided to apply for the survey by the end of last month.

“It’s rather troublesome” The intention to decide by the main members before explaining the residents

At this time, mr. Kataoka said, “It would be rather troublesome if you ask the townspeople to have a study session, so let’s all do so by the administration, the council, the industrial organizations, and the people in the key positions that move the town,” and we can see the intention that only the main members of the town were going to decide on an application before explaining it to the residents.

Why did you hurry? Background 1. Attracting offshore wind power

The background can be seen from the minutes why the mayor of Kataoka was in a hurry. One is offshore wind power generation.

The town expects to attract offshore wind power as a new source of revenue, and aims to be designated as a “promotion zone” by the government, but there are no plans.

Mr. Kataoka expressed a strong sense of crisis at the meeting of all members in February and March, and said, “It may be an unpleasant way of fighting to raise offshore wind power while tickled the bureaucrats of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, but if the result is good, anything is fine.” In order to make up for the delay, I want to do it by any means, and I want to get the national designate in exchange for the investigation of the final disposal site.”

Why did you hurry? Background 2. The public finances and grants of 9 billion yen

The other is the town’s finances to pull.

At a meeting of the all-people council last month, Mr. Kataoka said, “I have a strong desire to keep up with the current weakness of the country and raise it as a business opportunity. It’s hard to earn 9 billion yen,” he said, and he accepted the “summary survey,” which is the second stage of the survey, and said that he wanted to receive grants of up to 9 billion yen.

The time of the application judgment after the voice of the repulsion one after another avoids the statement

In Suto-cho, residents’ briefings have been held in various parts of the town since it became clear by the media that they were considering applying, but the mayor of Kataoka has now avoided saying that he needs a polite explanation, and that the timing of the application decision has been avoided.

Mayor Kataoka “A lot of people with nuclear allergies may have been sweet”

The mayor of Shouto-cho, Kataoka, admitted to NHK that he had initially indicated his intention to apply for the survey by the end of last month, and said, “First of all, I raised my hand to the literature survey and with the consent of the industrial organization, and then I decided to explain it to the residents properly.”

On top of that, he said, “There are quite a lot of people who have allergies to nuclear weapons, and it might have been sweet in itself that I thought they would understand even if I raised my hand first to apply for a literature survey and then explained it to the townspeople. There are considerable concerns about nuclear waste, both those who agree and those who oppose it, and we must respond sincerely to what the residents want.”

On the other hand, regarding the idea of obtaining the country’s name for offshore wind power in exchange for the final disposal site survey, he said, “Offshore wind power generation is completely delayed in Hokkaido, and it is natural to try to win. One of the ingredients is to have the nuclear part of the country in trouble float on the table, so I think, ‘What’s wrong?'”

Expert: “It is important for townspeople and society, including the background, to be able to judge”

Associate Professor Hirota Suraku of Tokyo Denki University, who is a member of the national expert committee on the selection of nuclear waste disposal sites and is familiar with the relationship between nuclear power and society, said, “If the process of applying for the survey is left to the autonomy of local governments, there is a possibility that the process of consensus formation may become unclear.” The framework of the agreement is clearer and the government needs to consider it, such as pre-deciding the necessary conditions, such as obtaining the approval of the town council before applying.”

On top of that, he said, “When the mayor decides, it is required to explain in a transparent way why his town accepts the survey, and to gain his consent. I think there is a reason why it greatly contributes to the town’s finances, but it is important for the townspeople and society to be able to make decisions, including against such a background.”

Final disposal site Selection flow

According to nuMO, an authorized corporation of the country that implements underground disposal of high-level radioactive waste, the investigation will be carried out in three stages by the time the disposal site is selected.

The first step is a literature survey.
The purpose of the literature survey is to understand the situation of the strata from research papers and geological data in order to find suitable candidate sites for burying and disposing of underground. Specifically, we will spend about two years investigating how volcanoes and active faults are distributed in the applicable area and whether there are any mineral resources of economic value.

If the evaluation of the literature survey is completed and the understanding of the local government etc. can be obtained, it advances to the second stage called “summary survey”. In this survey, it takes about four years to examine the geological, groundwater, and other conditions directly, such as by conducting boring to dig out geological layers.

If we can gain the understanding of local governments, etc., we will enter the third phase of the “Precision Survey.” This study is expected to take about 14 years, and based on the activity of past volcanoes and earthquakes, the final results will be compiled on the stability of future strata and the presence or absence of mineral resources that may be subject to drilling in the future.

Based on the final results of this survey, whether or not to actually create a disposal site will be decided after listening to the opinions of the residents and the opinions of local governments.

On the other hand, if the local government accepts the survey, up to 2 billion yen will be paid as a grant in the first literature survey and up to 7 billion yen in the second phase summary survey, but the government will respect the opinions of the local governments fully in any stage of the survey and will not proceed to the next survey if they oppose it.

How have you been up to now?

It was revealed on the 13th of last month that the town of Suto is considering applying for the “Literature Survey,” which is the first step in the selection of a final disposal site.

At this stage, Mr. Kataoka held an exchange of opinions and briefings with representatives of organizations such as town council members and fishing cooperatives, and decided whether to apply as early as the middle of this month.

After that, at a meeting with the town council members, members of the council said, “We should explain more carefully to the townspeople,” so the town expressed the idea that the decision period would be after next month after the residents’ briefing session, which was originally scheduled to be held at seven locations in the town.

In addition to holding additional briefings, we are also holding briefings by the end of this month with representatives from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

As for the timing of the application decision, Mayor Kataoka said it was “very annoying” and is now avoiding any statement.