Japan's nuclear switch-off 日本关闭最后一个核电站

更新时间 2013年 9月 20日, 星期五 - 格林尼治标准时间08:55

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Some household electricity bills are now 30% higher

日本最后一个运作核电站被关闭。这个核电站位于日本西部,虽说是为了维修而关闭,但却没有宣布该核电站将于何时重新启动。这一宣布充分说明核能在日本的重要性正在改变。在日本福岛核泄漏事故之前日本曾经是世界上使用核能最多的国家之一。以下是 BBC记者 John McManus 发回的报道:

The reactor in Ohi is one of only two in Japan that's been operational since July 2012. Reactor No 3 at the site was taken offline nearly a fortnight ago, and now the operators of Reactor No 4 have begun shutting it down too.

The plant's owners are amongst four companies who want to restart their reactors in the future, observing new safety guidelines. But the memories of the accidents at Fukushima in 2011 have left most Japanese people opposed to nuclear power.

The country's prime minister, though, wants to bring nuclear energy in from the cold. Shinzo Abe says that Japan can't carry on paying the high costs of importing gas and oil, in order to keep the country's lights on.

Some household electricity bills are now 30% higher than before the Fukushima accident, and analysts think the rises are set to continue. And the price of importing more energy from abroad has helped to inflate Japan's trade deficit.

Yet even if every nuclear reactor was brought back online many of them are reaching the end of their 40-year lives, which means a decision will have to be made about whether to replace them.

Quiz 听力测验

1. Why are most Japanese people opposed to nuclear power?

They fear accidents such as the one in Fukushima in 2011.

2. Who wants to make nuclear power more acceptable?

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

3. What is the impact of the closure of nuclear plants on Japanese households?

Household electricity bills are now up to 30% higher.

4. How long do nuclear reactors work for?

Forty years.

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