May 2012 Tokyo Meetings

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The U.S.-Japan Nuclear Working meets in Tokyo

Following commencement of the Nuclear Working Group at a March 2012 retreat meeting in San Francisco, the group convened in Tokyo on May 23 and 24, 2012 for a series of discussions with key figures representing various interests in Japan’s current nuclear policy discourse.

The Tokyo meetings occurred at a time of intense deliberations over the formulation of a new Japanese nuclear regulator, accusations of impropriety at Japan’s Atomic Energy Commission, and the restart of reactors at Kansai Electric’s Oi plant. Therefore, while the group was focused primarily on exploring the broader strategic implications of the Fukushima accident, the timing of their meetings also afforded a valuable opportunity to directly contribute to Japan’s very active domestic policy discourse. In their meetings, the group emphasized the need to clearly identify and articulate the root cause of the Fukushima accident as an urgent and essential step in Japan’s national recovery. Group members also strongly encouraged the establishment of a robust and independent nuclear regulator, discussing lessons from the post-Three Mile Island experience in the United States. The Nuclear Working Group does not take any position on the matter of restarting Japanese reactors, and group members did not address the matter during its meetings in Tokyo.

U.S.-Japan Nuclear Working Group meeting with members of the Japanese Diet on May 24th.

The Nuclear Working Group met with the following individuals over the course of their meetings in Tokyo, May 23-24, 2012:

  • Fumihiko Yoshida, Editorial Writer, Asahi Shimbun
  • Takashi Sakamoto, Editorial Writer, International News Dept. Yomiuri Shimbun
  • Junichi Taki, Editorial & Senior Writer, Science & Technology News Dept., Nikkei
  • Hiroshi Fuse, Editorial Writer, Mainichi Shimbun
  • Kurt Tong, Deputy Chief of Mission, US Embassy Japan
  • Marc Wall, Minister Counsellor for Economic and Science Affairs, US Embassy Japan
  • Jeffrey Miller, Energy Attaché, US Embassy Japan
  • David Roberts, Science Adviser to the Ambassador, US Embassy Japan
  • Jen Laedlein, Second Secretary, US Embassy Japan
  • Shunsuke Kondo, Japan Atomic Energy Commission Chairman
  • Tetsunari Iida, Executive Director, The Institute for Sustainable Energy Policies
  • Akira Kawasaki, Executive Director, Peace Boat
  • Yohsaku Fuji, Former President, Kansai Electric Power Company
  • Kano Saito, Senior Vice President, Global Nuclear Business Operations, Nuclear Energy Systems, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
  • Iichiro Takekuro, Chief Executive Officer, JINED (International Nuclear Energy of Japan, Co.)
  • Hiroyuki Yoshida, Chief Fellow, Nuclear Energy & Services Division, Toshiba
  • Masahito Yoshimura, Vice President and General Manager, Hitachi-GE Nuclear Energy, Ltd.
  • Kyoji Yoshino, Director, Nuclear Energy Policy Division, METI
  • Masaomi Koyama, Principle Deputy Director, International Affairs Office, NISA
  • Tadashi Yamada, Deputy Director, International Affairs Office, NISA
  • Masaaki Nishijo, Director, Office for Nuclear Fuel Cycles, MEXT
  • Eisuke Nakada, Deputy Director, International Nuclear & Fusion Energy Affairs Division, MEXT
  • Hiroshi Taninaka, Researcher, Nuclear Energy Division, MEXT
  • Satoshi Arai, House of Representatives
  • Tetsuro Fukuyama, House of Councillors
  • Yoshimasa Hayashi, House of Councillors
  • Sumio Mabuchi, House of Representatives
  • Mieko Nakabayashi, House of Representatives
  • Yasutoshi Nishimura, House of Representatives
  • Nobumori Otani, House of Representatives
  • Hiroshige Seko, House of Councillors
  • Nobuhiko Suto, House of Representatives
  • Goshi Hosono, Minister of Environment

On July 16th, 2012, members of the working group held a follow-on meeting to discuss observations and conclusions with the following members of the Washington, D.C. policy community:

  • Kazuko Goto, Japan MEXT
  • Mark Holt, Congressional Research Service (CRS)
  • Lawrence Scheinman, Monterey Institute of International Studies
  • Mike Schiffer, Senate Foreign Relations Committee
  • Seiichi Shimasaki, Embassy of Japan
  • Cliff Singer, University of Illinois
  • Takahiro Nanri, Sasakawa Peace Foundation


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