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Japan Utilities’ July Fuel Oil Use Rises 64% on Nuclear Shutdown

Japan’s 10 regional power companies increased consumption of fuel-oil in July as the country’s reliance on thermal generation rose due to the shutdown of nuclear power plants after the Fukushima disaster.

Power companies, including Tokyo Electric Power Co., the owner of the crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear station, used 1.25 million kiloliters, according to data released today by the Federation of Electric Power Companies. The 10 utilities consumed 761,670 kiloliters of fuel oil a year ago and 1.18 million kiloliters in June, according to the group.

The operation rate for nuclear plants increased to 2.9 percent from zero in June as Kansai Electric Power Co. started two reactors at its Ohi nuclear power plants in July. Japan’s remaining 48 reactors remain shut for maintenance and safety checks after the meltdown and radiation leaks at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant in March 2011 caused safety concerns.

The following table shows Japanese utilities’ consumption and purchases of fuel-oil, crude, LNG and coal for July. Fuel oil and crude volumes are in kiloliters, while those for LNG and coal are in tons.

               July  2012           Change on year
Fuel oil         1,250,251            64%
Crude oil        913,198              59.5%
LNG              4,722,557            5%
Coal             4,731,391            6.1%

Fuel oil         1,236,978            37.2%
Crude oil        763,610              6%
LNG              5,078,622            11.7%
Coal             4,661,632            20.6%


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