More than 1.3 million tons of nuclear wastewater will be discharged into the Pacific Ocean from 2022 for up to 30 years… As early as the 27th of this month, the Japanese government will finalize the Fukushima nuclear wastewater discharge into the sea policy.
This would lead to disasters across the Pacific and even globally.
Not only is it harmful, but it also opens up a mess of the Japanese government’s handling of the Fukushima nuclear crisis over the past decade.
This time, the Japanese government, which lied about nuclear wastewater, said they had “no choice” and said it had tried to come up with a “minimally hurting” solution. Which is to pull the whole world into the disaster!
Japanese government’s “solution”.
At a press conference on the 16th, Japan’s official governor, Yukio Kato, announced that japan’s cabinet meeting will formally decide by the end of October to discharge Fukushima nuclear wastewater into the sea.
When he said this, there was “helplessness and embarrassment” in his words.
On the same day, the Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry Hiroshi Kajiyama also talked about this issue. He said that the government has not yet made a decision, but will “determine it as soon as possible.”
The two high-ranking Japanese officials expressed their views at the same time, which immediately aroused widespread attention from Japanese media and international public opinion.
But in fact, as the two of them showed, was the Japanese government “helpless” and “hesitant” when making this decision?
The issue of nuclear wastewater began in March 2011. The Great East Japan Earthquake and the resulting tsunami caused the Fukushima nuclear power plant to leak and the cooling system was damaged. To control the temperature of the reactor, TEPCO, which belongs to the nuclear power plant, has to inject large amounts of cooling water into it every day.
In the first few years, four to five hundred tons of nuclear wastewater were generated every day. Even if it dropped to around 170 tons last year, the total accumulated in September this year reached 1.23 million tons. This radioactive sewage is stored in storage tanks in the nuclear power plant area and undergo purification treatment at the same time.
But recently, TEPCO has sounded the “alarm”: There are as many as 1044 nuclear wastewater tanks, and the available storage space in the plant will be exhausted in the summer of 2022.
At this time, the Japanese government proposes to prepare to discharge into the ocean, which can be described as the “time”.
However, the Japanese media’s review shows that the plan for drainage into the sea has already been determined. The Japanese government wanted to do this a long time ago, but the resistance was too great.
Kyodo News said that discussions on the Fukushima nuclear wastewater treatment plan began in 2013. In the past seven years, at least five plans have been made, including burying in the ground and evaporating into the atmosphere. But by February this year, the decision of the Japanese government was already obvious: Discharge into the ocean.
In the past few years, not only Japan’s domestic fisheries organizations but also neighboring countries such as South Korea and some international organizations have also strongly opposed Japan’s actions.
On the same day that Japanese officials expressed their views on the 16th, South Korea responded by announcing the activation of an inter-agency response mechanism.
Due to geographical proximity and tensions, South Korea has been focusing on the Fukushima nuclear wastewater treatment issue in recent years. Just last month, South Korea has just requested the International Atomic Energy Agency to investigate possible radioactive pollution caused by Fukushima nuclear wastewater entering the sea.
In fact, as early as 2011 when the accident happened, Japanese officials showed signs of overcoming difficulties through deception and other means.
One is that the Fukushima nuclear accident is called the most serious nuclear crisis since Chernobyl in 1986. However, for the sake of economic interests, the Japanese government was especially worried that nuclear power exports would be affected and deliberately concealed the level of disaster. It was originally the highest level 7, but only level 4 was reported.
Second, at the beginning of the incident, TEPCO directly discharged the first batch of nuclear wastewater into the Pacific Ocean. As a result, in the first month of the Fukushima nuclear accident, radioactive materials were monitored throughout the Pacific Ocean. In the second month, radioactive materials from nuclear power plants were detected in a larger area of the ocean.
Because of this, the Japanese government was criticized by the international community.
Now, Japanese officials such as Katsunobu Kato and Hiroshi Kajiyama have come out to give a briefing, explaining that the Japanese government wants to create “opportunities” to repeat the same technique.
The Japanese government’s lies.
How terrible is the Fukushima nuclear wastewater? The Japanese government is still deceiving the world.
In deciding to “drain water into the sea”, the Japanese government first emphasized that the relevant radioactive sewage has been treated to meet the so-called discharge standards.
However, as early as 2018, the Japanese government began to lie about whether the standards were met.
After the nuclear accident, TEPCO was using a kind of purification equipment to treat wastewater and claimed that except for the less harmful tritium, other radioactive materials can be removed.
But in 2018, when some experts studied the Fukushima nuclear wastewater in 2017, they found that the treated polluted water not only contained tritium, but also a large number of radioactive substances such as carbon 14, cobalt 60, and strontium 90.
At that time, many people criticized the Japanese government and TEPCO for blatantly deceiving the international community.
In addition to claiming compliance, the Japanese government also added a “diluted” prefix to this decision. It claims to be diluted 40 times before discharging, “this is the treatment method with the least impact on the natural environment.”
But even Japanese netizens say this is an insincere deception!
The total amount of nuclear wastewater remains unchanged, and it will take 30 years to completely discharge it. Even if it is diluted again, still so much radioactive material enters the sea.
Many professional organizations have warned against Japan’s direct discharge of nuclear wastewater into the sea.
A top marine scientific research institution from Germany conducted a computer simulation on the spread of nuclear wastewater. The results showed that within 57 days, radiation would spread to most of the Pacific Ocean. Six months later, high-dose radiation spread on a large scale. In just three years, the United States and Canada will be contaminated.
Other authoritative marine research institutions, such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the United States, have also predicted the proliferation of nuclear pollution in Fukushima. The conclusion is roughly the same: under the action of ocean currents, the pollution of radioactive materials will spread to the entire Pacific Ocean, and even the global marine environment.
In other words, if the Japanese government really does that, it will affect the entire human race.
The sequelae of the Chernobyl nuclear accident 34 years ago are still there. The Fukushima nuclear accident is almost at the same level as Chernobyl. Although in the past ten years, Japanese domestic research institutions have observed many harmful effects caused by nuclear radiation: the incidence of thyroid cancer among minors in Fukushima is as high as the average level in Japan. Dozens of times; the concentration of cesium-137 in the seawater near Fukushima is as high as 1,000 times the normal value, and it has been enriched in fish; the radioactive substances such as crops in the Fukushima area have also seriously exceeded the standard…
Some experts say that the Japanese government lied about nuclear wastewater and completely lost its scientific, political, and diplomatic credibility.
What’s worse is that the Japanese government knows the serious consequences of the proliferation of nuclear radiation, and it still speculates to find excuses to discharge nuclear wastewater into the sea.
This kind of knowingly committed crime can be regarded as a crime against the global oceans and the entire human race.
Apart from being discharged into the ocean, does the Japanese government really have “no choice”?
of course not! The Japanese government still has a lot of room to do.
At present, there is still a large amount of usable land around the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Because of the high amount of nuclear radiation, it was originally not suitable for human living. Can be used as a new nuclear wastewater storage point.
Some experts calculated the accounts for the Japanese government: At present, the increase in nuclear wastewater in 10 years is known. Then according to the disintegration time of nuclear power plants in about 30 to 40 years, the total amount of nuclear wastewater in the future can be predicted, and the risks of this process are controllable.
This is also “exchanging space for time” and striving for a better solution.
During this period, first, the radioactivity of nuclear wastewater will gradually decay. For example, the half-life of tritium is about 13 years. After a few decades, the radioactivity of this batch of nuclear wastewater will be doubled. Second, the Japanese government can use this time, either by its own efforts or with international cooperation, to accelerate the development of new nuclear pollution treatment methods.
But the question is, is the Japanese government willing to do that?
Greenpeace made a severe criticism of the Japanese government last year, saying that out of cost considerations, it did not develop wastewater treatment technology to remove tritium, a radioactive pollutant, and did not set the goal on the long-term goal of protecting the entire Pacific Ocean.
It is said that a number of nuclear energy companies have submitted proposals for tritium removal technology to relevant Japanese authorities, and the expenditure is expected to reach US$2 billion to US$180 billion. As a result, “None of these plans could enter the detailed technical evaluation stage”, they were deemed unfeasible and rejected.
For economic reasons, the Japanese government has deliberately downgraded and notified even the worst nuclear disaster in more than 30 years. In order to reduce the fear of radiation, even the level of radiation exposure that the public can bear can be deliberately increased, so what can’t be done?
The irresponsible “cowardly behavior” of the Japanese government has caused strong opposition and criticism from neighboring countries and international organizations including the United.
In June of this year, the United Nations special rapporteur concerned about the disposal of hazardous materials and other issues urged the Japanese government not to ignore its obligations on nuclear waste disposal. Do not use the opportunity of the epidemic to force nuclear wastewater into the sea without international consultation.
Several special rapporteurs put it bluntly: How to deal with nuclear waste “will have a profound impact on humans and the planet for generations.” The new crown epidemic cannot be a means for Japan to divert public attention from this major issue.
They also pointed out that the Fukushima nuclear power plant still has sufficient space to build more nuclear wastewater storage tanks, and the Japanese government “does not need to make hasty decisions.”
But if Japan insists on going its own way, how can other countries stop it?
An international law scholar said that the Japanese government must first obtain an authoritative international certification recognized by other countries in order to discharge nuclear wastewater into the ocean. Discharging pollutants to the ocean without going through procedures is a violation of international law. Any other country can sue Japan or claim compensation.
The Fukushima nuclear accident itself is a disaster on earth, and Japan should focus on seeking international cooperation to deal with the crisis. Rather than calculating all the organs, I am always thinking about throwing out the misfortune. This will cause an incredible disaster.