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社説:原子力協定承認 拙速にすぎはしないか

(Mainichi Japan) December 10, 2011
Editorial: Japan needs more discussion before exporting atomic energy technology
社説:原子力協定承認 拙速にすぎはしないか

The Diet's approval of atomic energy agreements, which the government has signed with Jordan, Vietnam, Russia and South Korea, has opened the way for exports of nuclear power plants to these countries, but the decision came too hasty and has not been thought through.
The pacts are expected to come into force as early as January.
However, the crisis at the tsunami-hit Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant has not been brought under control and the cause of the accident needs to be clarified. The Diet has endorsed the accords without in-depth discussions on how to ensure safety of nuclear power stations.
 政府がヨルダン、ベトナム、ロシア、韓国と結んだ原子力協定が、国会で承認された。これにより、協定は来年1月にも発効し、原発輸出が可能になる。
 しかし、東京電力福島第1原発の事故はまだ収束していない。原因の究明、検証もこれからだ。安全確保をめぐる十分な議論がないままでの国会承認は、あまりに拙速だといわざるを得ない。

Atomic energy agreements are aimed at preventing exported atomic-energy-related technology and materials from being diverted to military use, and are a prerequisite for exporting nuclear plants.
 原子力協定は、原子力関連技術や資材を輸出する際、相手国での軍事転用を防ぐために締結するもので、原発輸出の前提になる。

Japan has already signed such accords with seven countries including the United States, France and China as well as the European Atomic Energy Community.
日本は米、仏、中国、欧州原子力共同体など7カ国1機関と締結済みだ。

Under the agreements, Japan is expected to construct nuclear power plants in Jordan and Vietnam and commission Russia to enrich uranium while exporting parts for nuclear reactors to South Korea.
 今回承認を得たヨルダンとベトナムには原発輸出、ロシアにはウラン濃縮の委託、韓国には原子炉部品の輸出を想定している。

During Diet deliberation on the pacts, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said, "If we receive requests for cooperation despite Japan's current situation based on lessons learned from the crisis, we should do whatever we can to contribute to international efforts to enhance the safety of atomic energy."
 国会審議で、野田佳彦首相は「日本の現状や反省も踏まえ、なお協力してほしいというなら、できることをすることは国際的な原子力安全の向上に資する」と説明した。

However, one cannot help but wonder how Japan can prove its nuclear technology can contribute to global safety.
 しかし、「安全の向上」と胸を張る根拠はあるのか。

True, the Japanese nuclear power industry is quite advanced, but it alone cannot ensure the safety of operations at nuclear power stations.
確かに、国内原発産業の技術力は高い。しかし、それだけで原発を稼働し、運営する際の安全が確保できるわけではない。

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, is highly unlikely to participate in such an international deal even though it had been expected before the crisis to play a leading role in operations at these nuclear power stations abroad.
 輸出先で運営を主導すると期待された東電の参画は望めない。

Moreover, even if Japan emphasizes that its nuclear technology is safe without clarifying the cause of the crisis, it cannot win confidence from the international community.
また、事故の原因がはっきりしないままでは、安全性を訴えても説得力はあるまい。

At the same time, the prime minister also emphasized that it is Japan's responsibility to share its experiences learned from the nuclear crisis with the international community.
 一方で首相は、「事故の経験や教訓を国際社会と共有するのはわれわれの責務だ」とも強調した。

While this is correct, Japan should put greater emphasis on sharing with the world its knowledge on how to prevent nuclear accidents based on its thorough investigation into the Fukushima nuclear crisis.
もっともだが、共有すべきは、事故の徹底的な検証を前提にした事故防止のための知見であるはずだ。

The Diet had only 10 days to deliberate on the atomic energy pacts.
 今回の国会審議は、議案の審議入りから承認までわずか10日しかなかった。

It failed to carry out thorough discussions on safety measures even though Jordan is an earthquake-prone country and it is reportedly difficult to secure the massive amount of water needed to cool down reactors that are expected to be built in inland areas of the country.
例えば、ヨルダンは地震多発国であり、原発建設予定地が内陸部にあるため大量の冷却水を確保しにくいとされるが、安全対策の議論は生煮えだった。

It has been pointed out by some critics that the government was desperate to ensure the pacts clear the Diet within this year so that Japanese companies will not be put in a disadvantageous position amid international competition for contracts on the construction of nuclear power stations.
 政府は、締結相手国での受注競争で日本企業が不利にならないよう、年内承認を急いだとの指摘もある。

However, some members of the ruling coalition voted against the pacts.
しかし、採決では与党内からも反対者が出た。

Deliberations that fail to convince even some ruling coalition legislators can never win confidence from the Japanese public and the international community.
「身内」も納得しない審議では、国民や国際社会の理解も得られまい。

The government is currently negotiating atomic energy agreements with India, South Africa and Turkey.
 政府は現在、インド、南アフリカ、トルコとも原子力協定の締結交渉を進めている。

In particular, Japan should exercise prudence in its negotiations with India, which is not a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty even though it possesses nuclear arms.
核保有国でありながら核拡散防止条約(NPT)に加盟していないインドとの交渉は、とりわけ慎重であるべきだ。

To prevent Japan from exporting danger and anxiety to the world while decreasing its reliance on nuclear energy, the executive and legislative branches of the government are urged to hold more in-depth discussions on nuclear energy safety based on its verification of the cause of the Fukushima nuclear crisis.
 国内で「脱原発依存」を進める一方で、海外に危険や不安を輸出することがあってはならない。
 そのために、政府・国会には事故の検証を踏まえ、安全をめぐる議論を深めるよう改めて求める。

毎日新聞 2011年12月10日 東京朝刊
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2011-12-12 07:13 | 英字新聞

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