A Shimane Prefecture-based citizens group delivered a petition signed by nearly 48,000 people opposed to the restart of a local nuclear reactor to Gov. Zenbei Mizoguchi on Tuesday.

The total includes 32,491 residents of the prefecture, which has a population of about 684,000, making it Japan's second least populated prefecture after neighboring Tottori as of last year. The remaining signatures came mostly from those in four surrounding prefectures.

Chugoku Electric Power Co. operates the nearly 30-year-old No. 2 reactor at the Shimane nuclear plant in the prefectural capital of Matsue, and hopes to restart it.