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Fukushima Water Release



  Sep 05, 2023

Fukushima Waste Water Release


1. What is the Fukushima waste water issue?

Following the 2011 tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster at Fukushima, Japan has accumulated treated waste water at the plant. The plan to discharge this water into the Pacific Ocean has caused international and local concern.
 

2. Why is there waste water at Fukushima?

To cool the damaged nuclear reactors after the disaster, the power plant company, Tepco, has been using water. This has resulted in the production of contaminated water daily, which is stored in massive tanks on-site.
 

3. How is this waste water treated?

Tepco employs the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) to treat the water. This system removes most radioactive substances, with tritium and carbon-14 being exceptions. Prior to oceanic discharge, this treated water undergoes further treatment and dilution.
 

4. Why is there contention about the radioactivity of this water?

The sheer volume of waste water from Fukushima being released is unprecedented. Even though the ALPS process removes many contaminants, the presence of tritium and carbon-14, which emit low radiation levels but can be harmful in large quantities, remains a point of contention.
 

5. How have international communities reacted?

Countries like China and South Korea have raised concerns. Following Japan's announcement, China expanded its ban on Japanese seafood imports.
 

6. What's the general consensus in the scientific community?

Many experts believe the impact on marine life and humans will be minimal. However, there's a section that believes more research is necessary to determine the long-term effects.
 

7. How is Japan addressing these concerns?

Japan stresses its compliance with international safety standards. They've also committed to publishing real-time data on the radioactivity levels of the water online. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has also given its endorsement, citing a "negligible radiological impact."


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