Four NRA advisers get funds from Monju operator


Four outside experts in panels set up by the Nuclear Regulation Authority said they have together received more than ¥33 million in research funds from the Japan Atomic Energy Agency, which runs the experimental Monju fast-breeder reactor prototype.

The NRA requires its advisers to report any funds received from power companies and discloses those reported on its website. But the disclosure rule does not apply to money from the JAEA because it is not a power company.

The four professors are Yutaka Abe at the University of Tsukuba, Akira Yamaguchi at Osaka University, and Seiichi Koshizuka and Yosuke Katsumura at the University of Tokyo.

The four said that they just followed the NRA’s rules and that they did not find it necessary to report the funds.

Documents obtained by Jiji Press show that since fiscal 2009, the JAEA has given Abe more than ¥19.4 million for seven research projects, Yamaguchi ¥8.9 million for three projects, and Koshizuka nearly ¥4 million and Katsumura some ¥900,000 for one project each.

Abe and Yamaguchi are members of a panel that drafted new nuclear plant regulatory standards. Koshizuka participated in a regulatory system panel, and Katsumura was a member of a panel on the seawater problem at Chubu Electric Power Co.’s Hamaoka nuclear plant.

The JAEA is an independent administrative agency and, at the same time, a member of the Japan Atomic Industrial Forum, consisting of power companies and nuclear plant-related firms.