On Sept 13, 2012 the head of the nuclear safety agency visited Fukushima Prefecture to meet the local government officials. Shunichi Tanaka an expert in radiation physics who heads the Nuclear Regulatory Agency.
The Nuclear Regulatory Agency is an independent body which will be launched on Sept 19, 2012. The government has hopes that the body will instil more confidence than two current regulatory bodies both heavily criticised for their cozy ties with the power industry.
67b year old Tanaka is a former deputy head of Cabinet office’s Atomic Energy Commission and was appointed along with four other candidates which includes a reactor expert, a radiology expert and seismologist and a former ambassador to the United Nations.
Tanaka on Sept 13, 2012 met with Fukushima Vice Gov Masao Uchihori who asked him to make sure that Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident would not go like the wind and become a forgotten issue. Tanaka replied that his agency would strive to make nuclear safety standards in Japan the highest in the world. Goshi Hosono the Environment Minister, who is also the minister of nuclear disaster gave Tanaka and his team their letters of appointment earlier this week. Critics see some nominees as closely linked to the nuclear village.