Japan Finally Admits The Truth: Emergency At Fukushima

Tepco is struggling to contain the highly radioactive water that is seeping into the ocean near Fukushima. The head of Japan’s NRA, Shinji Kinjo exclaimed, “right now, we have an emergency,” as he noted the contaminated groundwater has breached an underground barrier and is rising toward the surface – exceeding the limits of radioactive discharge. In a rather outspoken comment for the typically stoic Japanese, Kinjo said Tepco’s “sense of crisis was weak,” adding that “this is why you can’t just leave it up to Tepco alone” to grapple with the ongoing disaster. As Reuters notes, Tepco has been accused of covering up shortcomings and has been lambasted for its ineptness in the response and while the company says it is taking actions to contain the leaks, Kinjo fears if the water reaches the surface “it would flow extremely fast,” with some suggesting as little as three weeks until this critical point.

Via Reuters,

Highly radioactive water seeping into the ocean from Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant is creating an “emergency” that the operator is struggling to contain, an official from the country’s nuclear watchdog said on Monday.

 

This contaminated groundwater has breached an underground barrier, is rising toward the surface and is exceeding legal limits of radioactive discharge, Shinji Kinjo, head of a Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA) task force, told Reuters.

 

Countermeasures planned by Tokyo Electric Power Co are only a temporary solution, he said.

Tepco’s “sense of crisis is weak,” Kinjo said. “This is why you can’t just leave it up to Tepco alone” to grapple with the ongoing disaster.

“Right now, we have an emergency,” he said.

If you build a wall, of course the water is going to accumulate there. And there is no other way for the water to go but up or sideways and eventually lead to the ocean,” said Masashi Goto, a retired Toshiba Corp nuclear engineer who worked on several Tepco plants. “So now, the question is how long do we have?”

Contaminated water could rise to the ground’s surface within three weeks, the Asahi Shimbun said on Saturday. Kinjo said the three-week timeline was not based on NRA’s calculations but acknowledged that if the water reaches the surface, “it would flow extremely fast.”

The admission on the long-term tritium leaks, as well as renewed criticism from the regulator, show the precarious state of the $11 billion cleanup and Tepco’s challenge to fix a fundamental problem: How to prevent water, tainted with radioactive elements like cesium, from flowing into the ocean.

  • Marielle Kerbaol

    I am so sad, poor planet, poor humans, poor life, no respect…….No hope

  • I have been shyng away from eating all the fresh seafood I used to enjoy from the Pacific Ocean,for the last couple of yrs.,since the earthquake.I heard the conductor was leaking long before the earthquake.The radiation evaporates into the atmosphere,too,so there’s no telling how much we’re breathing in,those of us right here on the edge of the big puddle!

  • The Japanese cannot manage this issue on their own and need international assistance. If it is going to take a “up to a 100 years to clean this up” how many more earthquakes and tsunamis in that time frame. If just one of the stored fuel rods falls and a nuclear reaction occurs in the open air – we all kiss our asses goodbye. Wake up world this is this is a potential extinction event – do we really want to join the dinosaurs?

  • Aysel

    It was not an earthquake! Who said it was an earthquake! THE MEDIA???
    You believe them!

  • Vodkasky

    Oh, crap! I have a Hawaiian cruise planned for when I get back from Afghanistan in June of 2014!

  • benosmash

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9lquok4Pdk
    We’ve been breathing in radiation for years.

  • michael mcsherry

    What i want to know is why do we have a nuclear watchdog ? what’s the point ! If they let Japan build nuclear reactors on a major fault zone prone to tsunami. Bunch of small minded greedy people i reckon. They should all be jailed and held responsible.Then again it proves that all of mankind is going to destroy themselves one-day. Are we so stupid? I know if i had that power. I would never had allowed it. But then again im only half stupid. Good luck world, unfortunately it is far too late. The cleanest, largest, high potential food source in the world is now gone.

  • Eva Veganforever

    As i was researching a “green related” article for http://www.eco3p.com i came across some work by david suzuki who claims that another serious earthquake will destroy japan and cause the evacuation of the west coast. What do you think?