More tsunami budget used for unrelated purposes

6 years ago by in Japan

After last month Japan admitted it has spent disaster budget on projects such as beefing up security for whale hunt and counting turtles, Japanese officials said last week that other money saved for helping nuclear, tsunami and earthquake victims has been given to power companies.

The decision could revolt people who lost their homes after the natural disaster that hit Japan in 2011, the media comments.

About Y10 billion ($100 million) of the Y25 trillion set aside for disaster recovery during the last several years has been reserved to cover the costs for utility companies that were ordered to shut nuclear power plants in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster, according to the international press.

Around Y2 billion had already been spent by Chubu Electric Power to help it make interest payments on bank loans taken out to fund the spiraling cost of fossil fuels.

Money was also used to provide heated water to local aquaculture facilities, which had previously received warm water from nuclear power plants, Japanese officials said.

“The funds were meant to help utility companies cope with higher operating costs when the government ordered them to suspend nuclear reactors,” said a ministry official. “Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe has ordered a re-examination of how the disaster budget is used, including the fund for utility firms,” he added.

The other Y8 billion left has been allocated to power companies, but has not yet been paid.