A team from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is visiting Japan from this Monday to review plans on the discharge of contaminated and treated water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant which is scheduled to start in 2023.
Some members of the team arrived in the Asian country on Monday, where they will remain until the 21st, to coordinate the activities and meetings of the visit, which will be concentrated next week with the arrival in Japan of the director of the Technological Security Coordination Office and Physics of the IAEA, Gustavo Caruso.
Caruso heads the mission of representatives of the agency and other international experts who will be in Japan between February 14 and 18 to review the feasibility and safety of the dumping plan, reported the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement.
The IAEA team “will hold meetings with the relevant ministries and with the Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) company to address coordination on water management”, and will visit the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant, before appearing in public at the end of the trip, a government spokesman confirmed to Efe.
The team was scheduled to visit the country last December, but the trip was postponed due to the spread of the highly transmissible omicron variant of COVID.
The Japanese government announced last April its plans to dump the contaminated water used to cool the damaged reactor cores at the Fukushima Daiichi plant into Pacific waters, after treating it to remove most of the radioactive elements, a process that It is scheduled to start in 2023.
Japan’s plans have been strongly opposed by local fishing communities, whose activities have failed to return to levels prior to the 2011 atomic accident, as well as by neighboring countries such as China and South Korea, which are wary of security. of the spill.
Japan spent years deliberating on this controversial measure, which is mainly aimed at solving the problem of the accumulation of radioactive water in the Fukushima facilities, one of the most pressing issues in its dismantling.
This water, stored in huge tanks, comes from the cooling of the reactors, as well as from underground aquifers and from rain that leaks and ends up contaminated with radioactive isotopes.
The liquid is treated with a processing system that eliminates most of the radioactive materials considered dangerous, with the exception of tritium, an isotope present in nature, although in low concentration.
The Japanese authorities maintain that the spill will not generate any risk to human health because the levels of tritium released into the sea will be below national health standards (when mixed with seawater) and defend that this is a common practice in the industry. nuclear from other countries.
(with information from EFE)
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