Pumping of Fukushima Groundwater Begins


from NHK World / April 8, 2014 / The government and Tokyo Electric Power Company will begin pumping up groundwater at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant on Wednesday. The water is expected to be released into the sea next month.

This will mark the start of one of several key measures to reduce the increasing volume of radiation-contaminated water at the facility.

According to the plan, clean groundwater that flows from the mountains near the plant will be pumped up before it can mix with highly contaminated water in the basements of the reactor buildings. The groundwater will then be released into the ocean.

The government and TEPCO decided to move ahead with the operation after fishery cooperatives in Fukushima Prefecture consented to the project on Friday.

The fishermen gave their approval on condition that the released groundwater meets strict environmental safety standards. They also require a third party to be involved in the inspection and discharge process.

TEPCO says it will take about one month to analyze the groundwater quality in detail. If there are no problems, it will begin releasing the water into the sea in May.

The Fukushima Prefectural Federation of Fisheries Cooperative Associations says decisions on whether to allow the groundwater discharge can be made only after stringent analysis of its radiation levels.


Pumping of Fukushima Groundwater Begins


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