The nuclear power plant, destroyed by the 2011 tsunami.
The Japanese government will shortly make its decision to expel contaminated water from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant into the seadespite strong local opposition, Japanese media reported on Friday.
Currently, around one million m3 of water is stored in about a thousand cisterns at the Fukushima Daiichi plant site. This water comes from the rain, the underground mantle or the injections necessary to cool the cores of the reactors. that went into fusion after the terrible tsunami of March 11, 2011.
It was filtered several times to remove most of the radioactive substances it contained, but not tritium, which cannot be eliminated with current techniques.
Before long, the storage capacity will be saturatedTherefore, the Japanese authorities have evaluated various solutions in recent years.
In early 2020, experts hired by the government recommended dumping the water into the sea, something that already it is done in other nuclear facilities in operation, both in Japan and in other parts of the world.
The government should approve this solution this month, but the operation itself should not start before 2022 at the earliest, according to various Japanese media. Much of the stored water still needs to be filtered again to remove other radioactive elements.
But this option, which would have been taken to the detriment of others such as evaporation or long-term storage, was heavily criticized by local fishermen and farmers, who fear that the image of their products will be further degraded.
Neighboring South Korea, which bans the importation of marine products from Fukushima, also expressed concern about the possible environmental consequences of the operation.
Tritium is dangerous to human health in high doses, according to experts. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also defended the solution of the water being expelled into the sea.
Fishermen in northeastern Japan expressed concern on Friday for the information that indicates that the government plans to announce its approval of the discharge into the sea of water contaminated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
Fisheries professionals in the region fear that if the spill is approved, on which the authorities have been debating for months, the efforts of almost a decade to resume its activity and sell its fish, while the safety of its consumption is questioned, will have been in vain, they explained to the Kyodo news agency.
“We are terrified that if a single fish is found to have exceeded safety standards after spilling the water, people’s trust in us will collapse, ”a 32-year-old fisherman from the city of Soma told the aforementioned media.