Fukushima Accident Updates (Blog)

Your most reliable source of objective Fukushima News. No "spins"...just summaries of news reports in Japan's Press on Fukushima Daiichi, often called a nuclear disaster.

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July 30, 2021

  • Tepco creates another way to show treated wastewater safety. They will raise fish in treated radioactive water in order to ease foreign and domestic safety concerns. The wastewater will first be stripped of radioactive isotopes until they are below drinking water standards, except for Tritium which cannot be removed. Then, it will be mixed with raw seawater until the Tritium concentration is below 1500 Becquerels per liter, which is 2.5% of the national standard. The diluted seawater will then be used to raise ocean fish,

    shellfish, and edible seaweed. This test process will be overseen by fishery experts and officials. Once the actual discharges begin, the testing will continue. Whether or not this will dispel harmful rumors remains to be seen. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021073000893 -- https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210730_08/

  • Olympic medalist bouquets come from Fukushima, Iwate, and Miyagi prefectures. Organizers had hoped the Olympics would promote the areas recovery, but the pandemic changed that. A Fukushima non-profit group grew flowers on vacated fruit and vegetable farmland, abandoned after sales plummeted. Miyagi added sunflowers grown to remember their lost children, and Iwate contributed the prefecture's famous gentians. 5,000 bouquets were arranged for both the Olympics and Paralympics. https://japantoday.com/category/tokyo-2020-olympics/Medalists'-bouquets-hold-deeper-meaning-for-Japan 

July 23, 2021

  • South Korea will screen its own food at the Tokyo Olympics. Why? They are still afraid of radioactive residuals from the 2011 Fukushima accident! A spokesperson for the Korean Sport & Olympic Committee said it has booked a hotel near the Olympic village to prepare and deliver boxed meals to its athletes. South Korean chefs will have to prepare about 400 meals per day, with radioactivity checks every step of the way. An anonymous ROK spokesperson said, "We are doing screening tests for cesium in food ingredients from kimchi we are bringing from home to other items including Japanese ingredients." South Korean government officials have declined to comment. Fukushima Governor Masao Uchibori says the decision is “really regrettable”, and "Producers (in Fukushima) are doubling efforts, including taking safety measures and conducting thorough tests." He added that he wants the government to make a firm response to these irrational fears. https://www.reuters.com/business/environment/skorea-team-screen-its-food-over-fukushima-radiation-concerns-2021-07-19/ –- https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021071900430
  • The Industry Ministry says Japan must cut 10% of its power output by 2030 to meet carbon release commitments. This means, they have to reduce greenhouse gas production by 46%. They envision expanding renewable power generation and thoroughly implementing energy-conservation measures. It is felt that meeting the 2030 greenhouse gas target will not be possible through building more solar and wind stations. the ministry intends for nuclear power to account for a 20-22 percent share of power output, but not enough reactors will be online to meet that target. 27 nuke units have either applied for restart or been granted permission by the Nuclear Regulation Authority, and all would have to be operating to meet the 2030 goal, which seems unlikely. https://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14399451

  • The Yomiuri Shimbun, Japan's #1 newspaper, says nuclear restarts and new construction are essential for making Japan's 2030 carbon emissions goal. Otherwise, the new plan (above) will be no more than a “mere display of seemingly coherent numerical targets.” However, wind power takes too long to put new units in place, and “there are few suitable places left for solar power generation.“ https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007606278

July 16, 2021

  • Tepco proposes a safe method for release of treated F. Daiichi waste water to the NRA. First, the stored water will be tested for Tritium concentration, tank by tank. Second, the amount of raw seawater needed to be added to meet national standards will be calculated. Third, one the dilution is complete, the water will be released. The company says measuring tritium after dilution takes too much time because of the nature of the material involved. After dilution, the ratio of treated water to seawater will be less than on part in 340 parts. Some academics want the actual pre-and-post dilution measurements to be made public. The company is seeking the nuclear Regulation Authority's approval of the plan. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210712_31/

  • Tokyo announces a pipe dream that solar will be cheaper than nukes by 2030. This will make solar the least costly source of electrical generation 0n the island nation... theoretically. For this to positive prediction to happen, the government panel making the forecast says that nuke costs will rise 10% due to greater safety mandates from the NRA, and solar will become more widespread than is presently the case to make the economy of scale cost drops possible. The Economy Ministry (METI) says solar is the best bet for Japan to meet its 2050 decarbonization goal for 2050. Has risen by over 1 yen per kilowatt since 2015, while the cost of solar has been said to have dropped precipitously over that period. Wind power is estimated to drop 4 yen to about 9.5 per kilowatt, while solar is believed to end up somewhere between 9.5 and 14,5 yen per kilowatt. Nuke power is estimated to cost at least 11.5 yen per kilowatt by 2030. The estimates are based on the assumption that new facilities will be built and operated on currently vacant plots of land, but do not include the cost of acquiring the land. Further, the estimate does not5 account for anticipated renewable demand, fuel prices, and facility utilization, i.e. how much of the potential output will actually be produced. Aside – a lot of what-ifs, with a large dose of wishful thinking thrown in. To date, solar has continually under-performed relative to the rosy predictions of the past, and cost more than was anticipated. – End aside. https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/07/10f6682cf57b-solar-power-to-become-cheaper-than-nuclear-in-2030-govt-estimate.htmlhttps://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210712/p2a/00m/0bu/017000c - https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021071200986

  • The NRA investigates Tepco over security issues at Kashiwazaki-Kashiwa nuke station. The NRA ordered the company to ensure that proper (i.e. regulatorily-sound) anti-terrorism measures are in place. Some defects were uncovered were discovered by Tepco, but its proposed fixes did not meet NRA wishes. Tepco is supposed to submit an assessment on fixes by September, then the NRA will start a full investigation on the K-K security problems. The NRA inspected TEPCO's head office to check in-house documents and hear from President Tomoaki Kobayakawa on how information on the matter had been shared and his level of involvement. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210713_28/https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021071300985

July 9, 2021 

  • The Skeptical Inquirer posts an overview of ten years of Fukushima disinformation. It begins with what actually happened on 3/11/11, covers the casualty myths, the impacts of the unnecessary evacuation, cancer myths, child thyroid cancer distortion and the buildup of contaminated waste water. It ends with these words, “We classify the Fukushima accident as a serious industrial accident. However, the actual consequences pale against the background of the more severe destruction and casualty figures of the natural disaster. Fukushima was not the global catastrophe it is often made out to be.” It is a good read! https://skepticalinquirer.org/2021/06/ten-years-of-fukushima-disinformation/?fbclid=IwAR3WZucvBcX-cn6xzGWv9DnH_KK6A7d5rNkqqRebwnB2ysEvy8-kFcjzSfE

  • Mihama unit #3 returns to full operation on July 5th. It is the first to restart after its 40 year license to operate has ended. Covered widely in Japan, the unit has actually only had 30 years of operation. But that doesn't seem to matter to the Japanese Press or Nuclear Regulation Authority. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021070500140

  • The Nuclear Regulation Authority looks to make Genkai Station review its estimates on earthquakes. A new method for making the estimates was approved in April, but Kyushu Electric Company says there is no need for recalculation since the nukes already meet the new standards. The NRA isn't buying it, saying, “Some earthquakes that are likely to strike may have a maximum acceleration exceeding the previous estimate.” Thus the NRA's directive will be issued. The company will have three years to comply. NRA to call for quake resistance review at Genkai nuclear plant | The Asahi Shimbun: Breaking News, Japan News and Analysis

  • The IAEA has agreed to monitor the wastewater release from F. Daiichi. Tokyo has garnered the agreement in the hope of establishing credibility, providing transparency, and dispelling unfounded rumors. An IAEA mission will continuously monitor the releases as they occur. The team will look at releasing process safety, effects on ocean water quality, and Japan's environmental monitoring. IAEA director general Rafael Grossi said, “The IAEA will play a vital role in monitoring and reviewing Japan’s implementation of its plan. As the eyes of the international community, IAEA experts will be able to verify that the water discharge is conducted safely. This is of paramount importance to reassure people in Japan and elsewhere in the world, especially in neighboring countries, that the water poses no threat to them... Japan’s chosen disposal method is both technically feasible and in line with international practice.” (Aside – We'll see. We think there will be a widespread outcry, no matter who monitors the release, especially from within Japan where the no-safe-level notion on radiation exposure is believed by millions of prople. - End aside.) https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210709_06/IAEA Agrees to Support Japan over N-Plant Water Release into Sea - JIJI PRESS

  • Tepco is studying ways to dispose fifty contaminated sandbags that remain inside 2 F. Daiichi incinerator buildings. The bags contain zeolite to absorb radioactive materials. The bags are submerged in the basement of the building. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210705_02/

  • Japan's new strategic energy plan will not mention nuke plant construction or rebuilding. Instead it says nukes will be “used on the scale necessary in a sustainable manner”. The plan is renewed every three years. This one is the first to leave out whether or not new nukes might be built. Prime Minister Suga has a goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, but achieving it is unlikely without new nukes being built, which is a touchy subject, to say the least. https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007563322

  • Solar energy has become a national headache in Japan. Touted to be the reason that Japan does not need new nukes, the opposite has proven to be the case in 80% of its prefectures. One problem has been rain-induced landslides that have covered many solar panels. Further, the panel arrays have caused severe rainwater run-off that was not anticipated. One farmer said, "My rice paddies were buried in sand and mud. "Things like this didn't used to happen." Another farmer said, "Sand and mud have come flowing down and muddied the waters, and I'm worried about how it'll affect rice cultivation." It looks like Japan will be stuck with the problem since there seems to be no socially acceptable alternative. Solar power has become a source of public hazards that threaten residents' daily lives around the country.https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210702/p2a/00m/0bu/002000c

July 2, 2021

  • Tepco and Tokyo have responded to questions about the eventual release of F. Daiichi wastewater to the sea. Tepco posted the results of the secondary treatment performance of ALPS (Advanced Liquid Processing System). It lists all 62 radionuclides that remain in F. Daiichi wastewater after a single pass through the process, in addition to Tritium (H-3) and Carbon-14. These isotopes, in varying concentrations, are present in roughly 70% of the storage tanks at F. Daiichi station at or above Japan's limit for open release. The posting was on June 24, 2021. These waters will go through a second ALPS treatment to bring all radionuclide concentrations below Japan's legal limit for each. https://www.tepco.co.jp/en/decommission/progress/watertreatment/images/20210624.pdTokyo's Industry Ministry (METI) also posted on March 2021... https://www.meti.go.jp/english/earthquake/nuclear/decommissioning/pdf/202103_Treated_Water_en.pdf

  • Some Press says the release of the wastewater is riskier than previously thought. The rationale for this is the common assumption that all radiation exposure poses health risks. Ken Buesseler of Woods Hole Institute says,It’s a hard problem, but it’s solvable.” South Korea and China both say (in essence) that the risks are greater than previously believed and that Japan doesn't care about protecting the marine environment, which is at best a gross exaggeration. https://strangesounds.org/2020/08/fukushima-treated-water-dangerous-isotopes-carbon-14-cobalt-60-strontium-90.html - https://maritimeindia.org/the-fukushima-conundrum-ocean-disposal-of-nuclear-waste/

  • The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists adds to the kerfuffle with time-worn objections. It says, “The environmental, social, and economic impacts of releasing the treated water to the sea must be more carefully assessed.” Further, “The government and the power company should explore alternatives to releasing the water to the sea,” both of which have occurred repeatedly over the past few years. Finally, the Bulletin adds, “The government should establish an independent oversight organization to ensure not only that the whole process is transparent but that the risk is acceptable to the local and international communities,” which has already occurred. (See today's first posting, above) https://thebulletin.org/2021/05/whats-wrong-with-japans-anticipated-release-of-fukushimas-wastewater/

  • Tepco announces that removal of fuel debris from F. Daiichi could begin next year. The company and Tokyo both say it will begin with Unit *2, which is the least damaged of the units that suffered meltdowns. The original schedule was to start this year, but the COVID pandemic caused unforeseen delays. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210628_02/

June 25, 2021

  • Namie flower growers prepare to make Olympic “victory bouquets”. They will be given to medalists as a commemorative gift. One farmer said, "We are preparing (our flowers) so that we can accept orders at a moment's notice. I'm looking forward to seeing athletes raise (their bouquets above their heads at the Tokyo Games)." https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021062300889

  • Tepco begins the process of decommissioning F. Daini. Located some 20 kilometers south of F. Daiichi, the four-unit station has been closed since the 3/11/11 quake and tsunami. All four suffered little damage, save for flooding due to the tsunami. Severe political and local pressure forced Tepco to to close the station permanently. The Nuclear Regulation Authority approved Tepco’s decommissioning plan on April 28. The company also got prior consent to the plan from Fukushima Prefecture as well as co-host Tomioka and Naraha towns on June 16. http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14379413

  • Mihama Unit #3 was restarted Wednesday, June 23rd. It is the first Japanese nuke to begin operation beyond Japan's largely arbitrary 40 year licensing limit. Kansai Electric Power Company personnel began the slow process of withdrawing control rods on Wednesday. The unit passed the NRA screening process on in 2016, but did not get approval from Fukui Prefecture until this past April. Criticality was achieved Thursday and initial operation is expected next Tuesday. Kepco President Takashi Morimoto said, "We'll proceed with the work as we give the highest priority to safety." Official Shin Hosaka of the Industry Ministry (METI) has said it’s “essential” for nuclear plants to operate longer than 40 years in order to achieve zero net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. This makes 10 nukes restarted since the 2011 quake and tsunami. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210623_12/https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021062300623 - https://www.vice.com/en/article/xgxank/japan-nuclear-power-climate-change?fbclid=IwAR2aiIejL-_8WGYk53iH2UgcR_bqcpnhrCTC50XgYTH9WISF2KVfDUnb6vA

  • Antinuclear officials are alarmed at the restart of Mihama #3. Tatsujiro Suzuki, formerly of the Japan's Atomic Energy Commission, has misgivings over how approval for the restart was obtained. He says there was a lack of transparency and that local approval was obtained because of financial subsidies. Suzuki added the trite, often used complaint, "It looks like the industry and the government have not learned the lessons of Fukushima." A subsidy of $23 million was committed to local communities before the Fukui governor signed off on the restart. Suzuki also complained, "The (20 year) extensions were supposed to be under exceptional circumstances but that doesn't look so exceptional." He conveniently ignored that Mihama #3 has not operated for more than 10 years, and has not “aged” during that period. https://japantoday.com/category/national/as-japan-reboots-44-year-old-nuclear-reactor-experts-sound-alarm

  • Shimane Unit #2 is gets preliminary approval for restart by the NRA. It is the fifth Boiling Water Reactor to pass the strict regulatory screenings now being enforced in Japan. Full official approval after a mandatory 30 day comment period. Chugoku Electric plans to finish seismic upgrades for the unit by the end of fiscal 2021. It remains uncertain when approval by local communities might occur. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021062300641

June 18, 2021

  • IRIS releases a 10th anniversary video on the 3/11/11 disaster. It has been 10 years since the magnitude 9.1 earthquake and resulting tsunami hit Japan, on March 11, 2011. Scientific lessons learned and described here include: 1. Tsunami geology can extend the earthquake record by millennia. 2. Earthquake Early Warning can mitigate damage and save lives, but the 2011earthquake revealed limitations of a system using only seismometers. 3. Adding Global Positioning System observations of earthquake ground motion improves accuracy of earthquake early warning, and is essential to tsunami warnings. Remarkably, there is nothing concerning the F. Daiichi accident! IRIS is a consortium of more than 120 American universities dedicated to the operation of science facilities for the acquisition, management, and distribution of seismological data. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcSI8fBZsY0

  • A Tokyo research group on F. Daiichi wastewater release meets in Miyagi Prefecture. Representatives from prefectural industrial organizations and municipalities gave their opinions, along with Miyagi Governor Yoshihiro Murai, who chaired the conference. Mr. Murai said, “Although activities have been completed in many of the affected areas as far as physical matters are concerned—particularly the restoration of infrastructure—more work must be done over the medium-range to long-range future on less tangible matters: namely, providing mental health care for affected people, forging communities in new places after relocation, giving support to rejuvenate industries, and so forth.” A Miyagi Fisheries official objected to the offshore release of the treated water. Fisheries Chair Haruhiko Terasawa explained the public fears and rumors concerning the future release, and asked for firm planning to deflect the rumors. METI State Minister Ejima responded to calls for developing ma Tritium removal technology, saying, “As of now, there is no effective means, but technology advances daily. We are prepared for further reviews at any time.” https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/working-group-on-offshore-release-of-treated-water-meets-in-miyagi/

  • Tokyo looks into a new policy to handle the radioactive slurry from ALPS. ALPS is the acronym for Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) at F. Daiichi. The action was caused by the recent revelation that 31 of the approximately 3,000 high integrity containers (HICs) for slurry storage exhibit radiation radiation levels that exceed the upper limit of 5,000 kilo-grays per year, and there will be 56 such HICs in another two years or so. The number will continue to rise for the foreseeable future as long as contaminated water continues to be produced at the nuke station. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/nra-considers-policy-on-treating-slurry-from-alps-with-local-understanding-essential/

  • The Mainichi Shimbun posts yet another scare-mongering article. It says the F. Daiichi wastewater will be released before Tritium test results are made public. Tepco says the report is technically correct, but the dilution of the wastewater before release, dropping the radioactivity to many times less than Japan's ridiculously-low limit for Tritium at 1,500 Becquerels per liter, makes a high-level release highly unlikely. This troubles local officials, with Okuma's Reiko Hachisuka saying, "If possible, I'd like them to release the water after checking their concentration levels." Fukushima official Kiyoshi Takasaka made a more reasonable comment, "I can understand the plan set out by TEPCO to a certain extent. I'd like them to monitor the amount of seawater used in dilution at all times and ensure that there is no malfunction in the seawater pumps." https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210612/p2a/00m/0sc/010000c

  • Long-dormant Mihama unit #3 to be restarted next week. It will the first restart for a unit that has exceeded Japan's arbitrary, but binding, 40 years licensing limit. Kansai Electric Co. is proceeding with pre-startup preparations. It is important to note that the unit has only operated for 30 years due to Tokyo's post 3/11/11 moratorium, but has no bearing on the 40-year operating limit. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210617_27/

  • Workers at Nippon Steel Co. are exposed to radiation doses above Japan's legal limits. Some received exposures of several dozen times the 50 milliSieverts per year limit. Nippon Steel says the factory produces iron plates for automobiles. It says the employees were inspecting the X-ray device to measure the thickness of the coating on the plates' surfaces. The Labor Ministry says the device mistakenly kept emitting X-rays during the inspection. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210611_30/

June 11, 2021

  • Tepco plans to build facilities to test treated wastewater before release to the sea. The plan includes groups of “sample tanks” with capacity of about 30,000m³ (tons). The tanks will be in three subgroups of 10,000 tons for three purposes: receiving, measuring and evaluation, and release. In addition, Tokyo has promised “New technological trends will be carefully and continuously monitored. If a viable technology emerges, it will be implemented as rapidly as practicable.” This might possibly mean that if a better method of disposal happens, it will be implemented. Tepco has a”called” for a new Tritium separation technology, along with an unnamed third party. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/tepco-to-develop-sample-tanks-at-fukushima-daiichi-to-prepare-for-offshore-release-of-treated-water/

  • Radioactive waste storage containers at F. Daiichi exceed their regulatory lifetime. 31 plastic cylinders are subject to replacement, according to the Nuclear Regulation Authority. There are about 3,000 such containers on site. They contain the used radioisotopic removal sediments from the ALPS (Advanced Liquid Processing System) treatment array. https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210608/p2a/00m/0bu/008000c

  • The Japan Electrical Manufacturers' Association (JEMA) wants clarity for nukes in Japan's national energy strategy. Not only to provide large-scale carbon-free electrical generation, but also use of small modular reactors (SMRs) and HTGRs (Hi Temperature Gas Cooled Reactors) where appropriate. JEMA says a specific level of nuclear contribution should be established.https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/jema-proposes-that-nuclear-power-be-maintained-at-a-certain-scale/

  • Tokyo's IHI Corporation says it will invest in NuScale's SMR technology. NuScale is developing a demonstration reactor at the Idaho National Laboratory, with a service target of 2029. The US NRC (Nuclear Regulatory Commission) approved the design in August, 2020. With its experience as a nuclear equipment manufacturer, IHI feels that SMRs can be “a promising solution to realizing a carbon-free society.” https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/ihi-to-participate-in-nuscales-smr-project/

  • A new 3/11/11 museum opens in Miyagi Prefecture. It is intended to show the lessons learned concerning the March, 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster. One of the most severely-hit prefectures on that date, the facility will have exhibits concerning the catastrophe. A contained theater for visitors has videos of the quake and tsunami, and plays recordings of people's testimonies. Admission is free. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210607_08/

  • A government group to address unfounded rumors meets in Fukushima. Inter-Ministerial Council to Address Countermeasures for Unfounded Fears and Rumors met to hear local opinions on the issue, primarily concerning the recently announced future release of wastewaters containing Tritium, and essentially harmless radioactive isotope of hydrogen. Locals want the government to act responsibly and present a firm framework for damage compensation. Economy Minister Kiyoshi Ejima kicked off the meeting by saying, “The government seeks and values fresh voices from the worksites. Relevant ministries and agencies will tackle each issue raised. The voices we hear will be reflected in new measures to be implemented.” Fukushima Deputy Governor Masaaki Suzuki added, “People in Fukushima are increasingly anxious that the results of their efforts over the past decade for reconstruction and the elimination of unfounded fears and rumors will soon go down the drain.” He wants Fukushima products to be sold at competitive prices, a stable workforce, and affected businesses run without concern for the future. The president of the Fukushima Federation of Fisheries Markets said they are the “world’s safest and most secure wholesalers.” He also added that a severe distribution situation is faced by Fukushima marine products and “The bottleneck of the issue is in the minds of consumers.” He wants Tokyo to fully understand the “unfounded fears and rumors.” https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/hears-local-concerns-about-unfounded-fears-and-rumors-on-offshore-release-of-treated-water/

  • More regulatory problems emerge at Tepco's Kashiwazaki-Kariwa station. This time, fire-prevention material applications at 76 locations in unit #7 is not finished. This contradicts the company's January 13th statement that safety work at the unit had been completed. This will probably further delay the unit's restart. Masaya Kitta, head of Tepco’s Niigata regional headquarters, said. “We are truly sorry for causing anxiety among local residents.”http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14370854

June 4, 2021

  • Singapore has lifted its remaining restrictions on Fukushima foods.Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong told Japanese PM Yoshihide Suga about the decision earlier this week. 14 countries continue partial or full restrictions, including the United States. https://japantoday.com/category/politics/singapore-lifts-import-restrictions-on-food-from-japan's-fukushima

  • Japan's Atomic Industrial Forum posts the facts about Fukushima's wastewater issue. Included topics are the latest progress on F. Daiichi's water treatment, the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS), Tritium and its theoretical impact on people, the trace radionuclides the remain after making one pass through ALPS, and information concerning the release of the wastewater to the sea. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/information-about-fukushima-daiichi-npps-water-treatment/

  • Tokyo discusses measures to mitigate Fukushima's reputational damage. It is anticipated that the essentially harmless release of the wastewaters will hurt the prefecture's fishing industry. Fukushima Vice Governor Suzuki Masaaki said all seafood produced in Fukushima should be traded at appropriate prices so that the industry can continue to be competitive. Some meeting participants complained that the decision to release the waters was hasty. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210531_28/

  • Japan's Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan (FEPC) says its members should use nukes to become carbon neutral. The groups says that by maximizing nuclear energy, Japan can reach its goal by 2050. The intermediate goal is to have Japan at least 20% nuclear by 2030. To reach this goal, the restart of existing nuclear power plants, improved availability factors, and long-term operations (extended lifetimes) must occur. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/fepc-declares-for-zero-emissions/

May 28, 2021

  • Tepco decides to build 23 more wastewater tanks at F. Daiichi. The combined capacity will be 30,000 tons and add about seven more months before they run out of space. This will expand the total storage capacity to 1.4 million tons. The economy ministry says it does not plan to add any more tanks thereafter. The company also announced that 35 of the on-site tanks will be designated as preparatory for release to the sea. They will be upgraded to allow constant measurement of the radioactive content of the water. http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14360321

  • Kansai Electric Co. completes fuel loading at Mihama #3. The restart process is expected to begin June 23rd, and full operation on June 27th. Commercial operation should start June 29th. Mihama #3 will be the first nuke in Japan to restart on extended licensing, giving it an added 20 years of operation beyond the 40-year regulatory limit. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/fuel-loading-completed-at-mihama-3-npp/ 

May 21, 2021

  • Tepco is investigating into where it should release its wastewater. There seem to be two options. One is using shoreline outlets near F. Daiichi units #5 & #6. The other is installing an undersea pipeline to make the release occur out to sea. Tepco will solicit the opinions of local officials and fishermen, then make a proposal to the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA). https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210516_08/
  • The NRA plans a system to measure thyroid exposure to residents near a nuclear accident. Japan's nuclear emergency response guidelines will soon be under review, and revisions will likely include thyroid monitoring for those under age 18 at the time of the accident, as well as pregnant women. It is believed these are the two demographics most susceptible to radiation-related thyroid disorders. Of particular concern are areas with levels in the 500 microsievert per hour range (50 millirems/hr) and places where there will be experiencing prolonged exposure of 20 mSv/hr or more. This action is due to the feeling that monitoring after the March, 2011 accident at F. Daiichi was inadequate. https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007405020
  • Last week, Kansai Electric Co. announced plans to restart three nuke units beyond Japan's 40 year licensing limit. They are Takahama units #1 and #2, and Mihama unit #3. The NRA has posted regulatory mandates in support of the now-60 year limit. In addition to periodic inspections approximately once a year, the units are subject to safety and reliability reviews every ten years. Operators are also required to conduct technological aging evaluations of important safety-related equipment and structures when a nuke reaches thirty years of operations, and every ten years thereafter. At 40 years, a special inspection is required to check the soundness of the reactor vessel, containment, and related concrete structures. Fuel loading for the Mihama unit began May 20th, with plans to complete the fuel bundle installation on Sunday, May 23rd. The other two units are delayed because newly-required anti-terrorist facilities have yet to be finished. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/takahama-1-and-2-and-mihama-3-npps-move-to-sixty-year-operation/ -– https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210520_29/


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