TOKYO Aug 12 Tokyo Electric Power Co
may hive off its hydropower and renewable energy operations into
a separate unit, sources with knowledge of the matter said, in
another element to a revamp as it tries to recover from the
Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011.
Tepco, as the utility is called, has drafted successive
recovery plans to restore its finances after the worst nuclear
disaster since Chernobyl in 1986, which led to its takeover by
A plan agreed by the government in January hinges on Tepco
restarting its Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear plant to cut fossil
fuel costs, a contentious undertaking staunchly opposed by the
With no units at the Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant likely to be
rebooted soon and with Japan undertaking reforms to fully
liberalise the electricity industry, the company needs to
consider further measures, said one of the sources, who is not
authorized to speak to the media.
The company had already planned to split into three units
under a holding company, covering power generation, electricity
transmission and distribution and retail sales.
The hydro and renewable energy unit would aim for average
annual pretax profit of 17 billion yen ($166 million) between
2016 and 2022, the Nikkei newspaper reported earlier.
Tepco is considering splitting into various units to be
placed under the holding company, but nothing has been decided,
a company spokesman said by phone.
The March 2011 earthquake and tsunami triggered three
reactor meltdowns at Tepco's Fukushima Daiichi plant north of
In the more than three years since the disaster, the utility
has been plagued by a string of setbacks at the Fukushima
station, including leaks of highly radioactive water last year,
prompting the government to step in with more support.
The disaster led to the shutdown of all of Japan's reactors,
which are being subject to tougher safety standards. Two
reactors in southwestern Japan have received preliminary
approval to restart, but they are unlikely to be activated this
(1 US dollar = 102.3200 Japanese yen)
(Reporting by Kentaro Hamada and Yoshifumi Takemoto; Writing by
James Topham; Editing by Aaron Sheldrick and Muralikumar