After being the victim of a devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was crippled. Since then Tokyo Electric Power Company has collected more than one million tonnes of contaminated water. Now recent reports from the media says that Japan’s government has decided to release this vast amount of contaminated radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea.

A formal announcement regarding this step is expected to be announced this month, reported by Kyodo news agency and other Japanese media houses. Japanese Industry Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama said no decision had been made yet, but the government planned to make one quickly. “Decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi plant is a major premise for a restoration in Fukushima from the nuclear disaster. To prevent any delays in the decommissioning process, we need to make a decision quickly,” he told a news conference – without giving any further details or a specific time period.

The release of the contaminated water will be a major concern for the Japanese Fishermen and also raise serious concerns in the neighbouring countries. As of last week, Japanese fishing industry representatives urged the government not to allow the release of water into the sea , saying it would undo years of work to restore their reputation. South Korea has retained a ban on imports of seafood from the Fukushima region that was imposed after the nuclear disaster and summoned a senior Japanese embassy official last year to explain how the Fukushima water would be dealt with. Early this year, a panel of experts advising Japan’s government on the disposal of radioactive water from the plant, recommended releasing it into the ocean. Japan’s industry ministry has been hearing views from various parties since April, including fishery representatives.

Source: Al Jazeera

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