Government Reports

  • 2006 Electric Power Supply Plan and Nuclear Industry Developments, Citizen’s Nuclear Information Center, March 2006. The latest plan from METI includes a table and time line for planned construction and startup dates for new nuclear reactors.
  • Japan Annual Energy White Paper, Ministry of Energy, Trade, and Industry, June 2006. In response to increasing global competition for energy resources, Japan has been focusing on energy security through promotion of nuclear energy, including nuclear fuel cycles.

Nuclear Energy

  • List of Nuclear Reactors in Japan, Citizen’s Nuclear Information Center, March 2006.
  • Cost of Nuclear Power in Japan, Nuke Info Tokyo 113, July/Aug 2006. This article considers costs associated with nuclear energy which were not included in an electricity generation cost comparison published in 2003 by the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy (ANRE).
  • Global Nuclear Future: A Japanese Perspective, Tatsujiro Suzuki, Security and Sustainability Lecture 06-01T, September 2006. Suzuki argues that the back-end of the nuclear fuel cycle would pose significant financial, political, and social risks to Japan’s nuclear power program. Japan should explore alternative socio-political solutions, including multinational approaches, to its complex spent fuel management issues.
  • Atoms for a Sustainable Future: Recommendations on Nuclear Energy in the 21st Century, Japan Institute of International Affairs, Taskforce on Atoms for the Sustainable Future, January 2008. This report makes recommendations on how to promote nuclear energy as a means for combating global warming while at the same time strengthening safeguards against the proliferation of nuclear weapons.
  • The Japanese Nuclear Energy Option: What Price? Endo Tetsuya and Arjun Makhijani, Japan Focus, 13 March, 2008. Endo Tetsuya, Chairman of the Taskforce on Atoms for the Sustainable Future organized by The Japan Institute of International Affairs, argues that nuclear energy has great potential in coping with the challenges of energy security and global warming if it is properly introduced and operated. Makhijani, president of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, counters by arguing that the costs and proliferation dangers associated with nuclear energy are too high to make it an acceptable option.

Nuclear Security

  • Safeguards Instruments for Large-Scale Reprocessing Plants, E.A. Hakkila, R.S. Case, and C. Sonnier, Los Alamos National Laboratory, 12-17 September 1993. In 1997, at the initiative of Japan, a multilateral forum known as LASCAR was established to assist the IAEA in the development of effective and efficient safeguards for large-scale commercial reprocessing plants. This report discusses the results of those efforts.
  • Chairman’s Conclusion from the Seminar on Strengthening Nuclear Security in Asian Countries, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 10 November 2006. The seminar concluded (1) that a threat to nuclear security exists; (2) that strengthening nuclear security is given high priority as an integral part of nuclear energy development; (3) that the international community should respond to threats through international legal instruments; (4) that international cooperation is needed to prevent terrorist acts; (5) that a further meeting should be convened in two years’ time to review the improvement of nuclear security.

Spent Fuel

  • Japan’s Civilian Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Spent Fuel Issue, Tadahiro Katsuta and Tatsujiro Suzuki, June 2006. This paper analyzes the future requirement of spent fuel storage in Japan and examines possible options to minimize future plutonium stockpiles in Japan without compromising Japan’s energy security.
  • Japan’s Spent Fuel and Plutonium Management Challenges: A research report of the International Panel on Fissile Materials. Tadahiro Katsuta and Tatsujiro Suzuki, September 2006. This report notes that, despite the clear-cut cost disadvantages associated with plutonium reprocessing, Japan is pushing ahead with the Rokkasho reprocessing plan due to local political considerations. But without the capacity to use all the reprocessed plutonium as nuclear fuel, there’s a risk of Japan building up a huge plutonium stockpile.
  • Japan as a Plutonium Superpower, Gavan McCormack, NAPSNet Policy Forum Online 08-005A, January 17, 2008. McCormack argues that while Japan has always publicly claimed to have a unique role to play based on its status as the world’s only victim of atomic bombing, “its record has been consistently pro-nuclear, that is to say, pro-nuclear energy, pro-the nuclear cycle, and, pro-nuclear weapons.” He further argues that Japan’s current and future plans for nuclear energy reveal a desire to become a “nuclear super-state.”



  • International Confidence to Japanese Nuclear Activities. Takaaki Kurasaki, Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 7 February 2006. This presentation outlines, in English and Japanese, the international perception of Japan’s nuclear safeguards.
  • Nonproliferation Policy and Safeguards R&D Initiatives in Japan. Kaoru Naito, International Nuclear Nonproliferation Science and Technology Forum, 19 May 2006. This presentation outlines Japan’s nonproliferation policy, its initiatives for realizing efficient and effective IAEA safeguards, and advanced safeguards technology for the Rokkasho reprocessing plant.
  • Comparison of the US-India and US-Japan Nuclear Cooperation (123) Agreements and their relationship with US laws and international frameworks, Kakujohu.net
  • Preventing Nuclear Proliferation Chain Reactions: Japan, South Korea, and Egypt. Elizabeth Bakanic et al., Woodrow Wilson School of International Studies, January 2008. This report examines the possibility of further nuclear proliferation in East Asia in light of the DPRK nuclear test, and concludes that it is unlikely that Japan or the ROK will deveop nuclear weapons in the foreseeable future. It recommends that the United States take several steps to strengthen its alliances in the region to help reassure its allies to further reduce this likelihood.
  • Japan’s Nuclear Future: Policy Debate, Prospects, and U.S. Interests, Emma Chanlett-Avery and Mary Beth Nitikin, Congressional Research Service, May 9, 2008. This paper examines the prospects for Japan pursuing nuclear weapons capability by examining the existing technical infrastructure of its civilian nuclear energy program. Presently, Japan appears to lack several prerequisites for a full-scale nuclear deterrent program, in addition to which there are a number of political and legal restraints on Japan’s development of nuclear weapons.
  • The End of Japan’s Nuclear Taboo, Elizabeth D. Bakanic, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 9 June 2008. The author notes that public attitudes toward nuclear weapons are undergoing a shift away from the traditional nuclear allergy. “While these developments mostly encompass asserting the rights to debate nuclear options rather than debating the options themselves, they represent a major shift. Actual consideration of nuclear weapons is still a remote and unpopular idea, but mentioning nuclear options is no longer off limits.”