Japan is caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to pressing ahead with its dream of a perpetual energy source through nuclear fuel recycling. Having poured hundreds of billions of yen into the failed Monju prototype fast-breeder reactor project, it is belatedly considering decommissioning the facility. But it is still left with a huge stockpile of plutonium, and no way of reducing the amount in the coming years. Having come this far, Japan is simply not able to abandon the problem-plagued, money-guzzling technology, hence its Nov. 30 plan to build a demonstration fast reactor to replace Monju. Unlike Monju, which uses and generates plutonium, a fast reactor only burns plutonium.
Asahi Shimbun 1st Dec 2016 read more »