Japan to Release Treated Fukushima Water in Sea, Kyodo Says
By Editor - Sat Oct 17, 9:34 am
(Bloomberg) — Japan is planning to release millions of gallons of treated radioactive water from its wrecked Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean, Kyodo News reported, citing unidentified people close to the matter.The government has agreed on this plan and an official decision by the cabinet is expected as soon as this month, according to the news agency. The verdict ends years of debate over how to dispose of roughly 1 million cubic meters of the water, enough to fill 400 Olympic-sized swimming pools, that leaked into the power stations that suffered core meltdowns after an earthquake and tsunami in 2011.The release likely won’t occur for another two years and could take decades to complete, Kyodo said. Storage tanks for the water at the site are forecast to be full by mid-2022.“It’s not true that the government has decided on a direction, or the timing for a decision,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told reporters in Tokyo on Friday. “On the other hand, to avoid delaying the decommissioning of the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant, it is true that we can’t put off forever a decision on how to dispose of the treated water.”The government must compile many comments on the issue from the fishing association and others, and have a deep internal discussion before coming to a decision, Kato said.Dumping the water into the ocean threatens to hurt Japan’s relationship with South Korea, and comes despite opposition from environmental groups and the local fishing industry, which is still struggling to recover from the disaster.