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TOKYO — A Japanese utility has started loading fuel into a nuclear reactor where operations are scheduled to resume next month in the country’s first restart under safety requirements set following the Fukushima disaster in 2011.

Kyushu Electric Power Co. said the first four fuel bundles, lifted by a crane out of a cooling storage pool, were loaded into the Sendai plant’s No. 1 reactor as of late Tuesday. The utility plans to finish loading all 157 fuel bundles Friday ahead of final inspections. The reactor is set for a restart around Aug. 10.

All of Japan’s more than 40 power-generating reactors are off line for repairs or safety checks. Sendai No. 1 is one of 25 reactors seeking restarts. Despite the concerns of some residents, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government wants to get the plants operating to help grow the economy.


Associated Press