May 31, 2017

Monthly Press Conference

Today, President Kenji Kudo held a monthly press conference in Aomori City and talked about the “status of response to the New Regulatory Requirements,” and “JNFL’s Response on corrective actions for quality assurance activities.”

Status of Response to the New Regulatory Requirements

JNFL received permission from the Nuclear Regulation Authority on May 17th for modifying activities of the Uranium Enrichment Plant.

As with the Reprocessing Plant, Vitrified Waste Storage Center, and MOX Fuel Fabrication Plant, JNFL requested a New Regulatory Requirements compliance review in January 2014 for the Uranium Enrichment Plant. Of those four facilities, the Uranium Enrichment Plant has become the first to receive permission, signifying a steady step forward for JNFL.

JNFL submitted an amendment to its application for activity modification permission concerning the Reprocessing Plant, MOX Fuel Fabrication Plant, and Vitrified Waste Storage Center on May 9 to the Nuclear Regulation Authority. This amendment reflected revisions in the design-basis seismic ground motion, changes in equipment, and other details briefed in past review meetings.

The Secretariat of the Nuclear Regulation Authority pointed out descriptions concerning the Reprocessing Plant and MOX Fuel Fabrication Plant. JNFL is now looking into the details and plans to submit an amendment after finishing preparation work.

With regard to authorizations related to the work approach and design of safety-enhancing engineering work for the facilities, JNFL will submit an application for the Vitrified Waste Storage Center on the afternoon of May 31.

JNFL also plans to apply for other facilities too, as soon as preparation work is completed.

Despite making steady progress in responding to New Regulatory Requirements for each facility, JNFL will further brace itself and keep working on reviews of each activity. JNFL will also reliably promote safety-enhancing engineering work while giving top priority on safety, and make all-out efforts in developing facilities that would reassure Aomori residents.

JNFL’s Response on Corrective Actions for Quality Assurance Activities

All the corrective actions on the direct causes of safety activities have been completed by the end of March. As for initiatives to address background factors, JNFL is continuing to educate employees on the Quality Management System.

As has already been reported, JNFL set up the Safety and Quality Reform Verification Committee, consisting mainly of external members, on April 25 with the aim of having third-party evaluations/advice to further promote company-wide reforms. The following individuals are to serve as the Committee’s members: Shigetaka Fujita, Hachinohe Institute of Technology Professor Emiritus; attorney Toshiya Natori; Aki Nakanishi, Meiji University Professor; Kazuaki Honda, Japan Nuclear Safety Institute Executive (Mr. Honda has a track record in improving quality assurance); Shigeru Oomori, L. Marvin Johnson & Associates, Inc. Japan Chief Lecturer, and; Jean-Marc Bousque (Mr. Bousquet is an engineer and served as deputy superintendent of the La Hague site).

The Committee is set to meet for the first time in June.

Experts will also support JNFL, three of whom as Safety and Quality Assurance Advisors and two as Workplace Environment Advisors. With their advice and observation on our business practice, JNFL will enhance the effectiveness of improvement activities.

JNFL is also developing employees who can accelerate improvement in workplace environment, and will continue making improvements in a company-wide manner.

JNFL management executives will be officially decided on June 30 with approval by the board of directors’ meeting to be held after shareholder meeting. Takashi Matsuda has been chosen as a candidate of managing executive officer, the second permanent JNFL employee to be chosen for that position.

As of May 1, roughly 87% of JNFL employees are working as permanent employees. Continued efforts will be made to increase the number of permanent employees, including management executives.