Disasters & Accidents

Japan says Fukushima wastewater discharge plan is ‘safe’

Tokyo, Jan 30 (EFE).- Japan said Monday it would take appropriate precautions when releasing wastewater from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean later this year, despite worries from neighboring island nations about potential threats.

“The government has been sharing the information with transparency… (and) has no intention whatsoever to discharge water into the sea that is not safe,” a Japanese government official told the foreign media in Tokyo.

Japan approved in early January a revised plan to dump contaminated and treated water from the troubled power plant into the Pacific in the coming months between the spring and summer seasons.

The plan sparked concerns from Pacific island nations which urged Japan to delay the release of wastewater, fearing it would cause risks to the fishing industry, people’s health, and the environment.

The Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), which brings together 17 nations in the region, sought more information about the revised Japanese plan.

A Japanese trade ministry official said the government had conducted more than 100 sessions of briefings and talks with neighboring countries to inform them about the plan.

“We hope to continue to conduct these briefings and to offer such detailed information.”

Japan plans to discharge the water stored in tanks into the sea after its treatment by the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) filtration system.

The official said the filtration system reduces the concentration of dangerous radioactive materials.

He said there had been occasions where water contained radioactive materials beyond the regulatory concentration due to trouble with some facilities or equipment after the launch of ALPS.

The filtration system eliminates 62 dangerous radioactive materials, except tritium, an isotope that is present in nature in a low concentration.

The ministry said tritium is in tap water, rain, and the human body.

The levels of the element in the water to be discharged into the sea will be 40 times below the limit set by the government for drinking water.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also pointed out on Jan.20 that the discharge into the sea of the water will be based “on the highest international safety standards.” EFE


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