Nuclear damage treaty to cost nuclear industry over ¥100 million a year

JIJI

An international treaty on collective compensation for damage from nuclear accidents will compel Japan’s power industry to pay up between ¥120 million and ¥130 million a year, informed sources said.

Japan, the United States and four other countries have signed the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage, which will go into force April 15.

Under the treaty, member nations will collectively provide funds to meet some costs of damage in the event that a signatory country experiences a nuclear accident. Power firms and research institutes with nuclear reactors will pay into the fund every year.

In the event of a nuclear accident, a certain amount of the compensation for victims will be borne by the country in which the accident occurred, with further payments covered by the treaty. Japan’s contribution when an accident occurs in another member state is set at about ¥4 billion.

From Japan, 30 entities will contribute funds, with the amount for each decided partly by the scale of their nuclear reactors. Large organizations, such as Tokyo Electric Power Co. and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency, will make the biggest annual contributions, with expected payments of around ¥20 million a year each. Power companies will raise this money from electricity rates.