The mayors and governors of all 17 major cities and provinces in Korea adopted a joint statement warning against Japan releasing contaminated water into the ocean from its crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant. In a joint statement Tuesday, the Governors Association of Korea, which includes cities that are administered as provinces, called on the Japanese government to “immediately halt discussions to release the radioactive water from Fukushima” and to “share information to the public in a transparent manner.” The governors’ statement comes as Japan is nearing a decision on plans to release over 1.2 million tons of contaminated water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean.
Korea JoongAng Daily 22nd Dec 2020 read more »
The operator of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, which suffered core meltdowns in 2011, has decided to delay the removal of nuclear debris by about one year from 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, sources said Wednesday. The process of removing the melted fuel, the most difficult part of cleaning up the facility, was to begin at the No. 2 reactor in 2021, but the virus spread has stalled tests in the U.K. of a robot arm that is to be used for the removal, the sources said. Of the Nos. 1 to 3 reactors that experienced meltdowns following a massive earthquake and tsunami, the removal procedure was to start at the No. 2 unit because the operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc., had the best grasp of its internal condition, they said. Tepco had planned to insert a robot arm into the unit’s containment vessel, from which it would initially extract around 1 gram of the debris at a time, then gradually expand the amount as it works toward removing several kilograms a day. The company was originally scheduled to verify in August the viability of the robot arm in the U.K. and transfer the equipment to Japan in February 2021 so that workers could start training with it. However, the spread of COVID-19 in the U.K. has caused delays, as precautionary measures were taken to limit the number of workers at factories, according to the sources. Tepco is considering doing part of the testing in Japan.
Japan Times 23rd Dec 2020 read more »