Japan to release treated Fukushima water into sea

Katie Ramirez
October 18, 2020

It has mentioned it plans to take away all radioactive particles from the water besides tritium, an isotope of hydrogen that's laborious to separate and is taken into account to be comparatively innocent.

But local fishers and residents have always voiced strong objection of releasing the water into the sea due to fears consumers would shun seafood caught nearby, and contend that the water, no matter how clean, has a dirty image for consumers.

Nonetheless, the government plans to go ahead with the disposal starting in 2022, several Japanese outlets reported today.

Japan won't be able to delay the decision as the space to store the water-including ground and rainwater that seeps daily into the affected nuclear power plant-is running out.

The process of filtering and releasing the water could take as long as 30 years, with clean-up efforts at the plant expected to continue until the 2040s or 2050s. Plant operator TEPCO is building more tanks, but all will be full by mid-2022. As of September 17, there were 1.23 million tons of treated water in about 1,000 tanks.

However some scientists say the water would quickly be diluted in the vastness of the Pacific Ocean, and that tritium poses a low risk to human and animal health.

Before being dumped into the ocean, the stored water would be processed a second time and diluted with seawater to lower levels of radioactive materials below legally established standards.

Simon Boxall, an oceanographer at the University of Southampton told The Guardian earlier that even if all water were released into the sea, it would not contain enough tritium to be detectable by the time it dispersed and reached the U.S. west coast about four years from its release.

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Almost a decade on from the tsunami, this year's Olympic Games in Tokyo were meant to symbolise Japan's comeback from the disaster.

The Video games have been delayed to 2021 due to the pandemic and a few occasions are as a effect of be held as shut as 35 miles from the wrecked plant.

During Tokyo's bid to host the Olympic Games in 2013, then-prime minister Shinzo Abe told members of the International Olympic Committee that the Fukushima facility was "under control".

In 2018, Tokyo Electric apologized after admitting its filtration systems had not removed all risky material from the water, collected from the cooling pipes used to keep fuel cores from melting when the plant was crippled.

Earlier this month, a court found both TEPCO and the Japanese government at fault for failing to prevent the meltdown.

The accident then resulted in a widespread evacuation of the local population as well as the distress to the country, huge economic losses, and also the eventual shutdown of every single nuclear plant that was located in Japan.

Around 18,500 people died or disappeared in the quake and tsunami, and more than 160,000 were forced from their homes.

Authorities are encouraging evacuees to return, but the population in the Fukushima prefecture has more than halved from some two million in the pre-disaster period.

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