Municipalities ask Tepco for residents’ data to expedite redress

JIJI

Tokyo Electric Power Co. may disclose information on Fukushima Prefecture residents who have yet to file compensation claims with their municipalities over the nuclear crisis.

Local governments in Fukushima have been calling on Tepco to share data about residents who are eligible to file such claims, as the right to seek damages for some of them could expire as early as September 2014.

Releasing this information is expected to assist with the early filing of compensation claims by such residents over the March 2011 meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 plant.

Tepco Executive Vice President Yoshiyuki Ishizaki, who heads the utility’s revitalization headquarters in Fukushima Prefecture, told a news conference in Naraha on Friday that the company will be flexible on the expiry of affected residents’ right to claim damages.

Tepco is examining appropriate ways to share the residents’ information with third parties without violating the Personal Information Protection Law, Ishizaki said.

Of the total 165,000 residents in 13 coastal municipalities in Fukushima who have filed for provisional compensation, 11,000 have yet to submit applications in full, according to Tepco.

Ishizaki said the utility will soon finish setting standards for compensation linked to contaminated farmland in the prefecture, and aims to begin processing applications by the end of August. Tepco also plans to start accepting applications related to contaminated mountainous and forested areas of Fukushima in September, he added.