Australian news, and some related international items

Treated water is almost full, a long way from completion of discharge at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant

Storage tanks for treated water on the grounds of TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Eleven and a half years have passed since the accident at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. TEPCO plans to start discharging the treated water into the sea as early as spring 2023 after purifying the radioactive contaminated water. However, local fishermen and people overseas are deeply distrustful, and the road to completion of the discharge is far from complete.

 This summer, there was a major development regarding the treated water. On July 22, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved TEPCO’s plan to discharge treated water into the ocean.

 According to the plan, the company will first reduce the concentration of 63 radioactive materials below the national standard, except for tritium, which is technically difficult to remove. The tritium concentration will be further diluted with seawater and adjusted so that it is less than 1/40th of the standard value (1,500 becquerels per liter). The tritium will be discharged to the seafloor about 1 km offshore.

 On August 2, Fukushima Prefecture and the towns of Okuma and Futaba, which are the local governments in the area, informed TEPCO that they had given their prior consent to start construction of the discharge facility, and TEPCO began full-scale construction of the facility. A shield machine was used to excavate an undersea tunnel, and pipes were laid to transport the treated water.

 However, the construction schedule is already running behind schedule. The installation of the caisson (concrete box) for the water discharge outlet on the seafloor was scheduled for the end of August, but has been postponed until September or later due to weather and other factors. TEPCO has indicated that the discharge may be delayed until next summer.
Zero” Contaminated Water Target Revoked

 Contaminated water containing high concentrations of radioactive materials is the source of the treated water. This water is generated when reactor cooling water and groundwater come into contact with the melted-down nuclear fuel (fuel debris) in Units 1 through 3.

 The treated water is the result of removing radioactive substances other than tritium using a multinuclide removal system called ALPS (ALPS).

 TEPCO has been rapidly adding tanks to store the treated water, but as of March of this year, 95% of the tank capacity (1.29 million tons) had been reached. In order to secure the space needed for decommissioning work, it is difficult to add more tanks. At this rate, the tanks are expected to be full by the summer or fall of 2011.

 What is urgently needed is to prevent the generation of contaminated water.

 The buildings of Units 1-3 are badly damaged. Groundwater and rainwater flowing from the mountain side of the site have entered the buildings, causing contaminated water to increase.

 TEPCO has been reducing the inflow of water into the buildings by pumping up groundwater from wells around the buildings and by building a “frozen soil barrier” to enclose the buildings. 130 tons of contaminated water was generated per day in FY2009, a quarter of the amount generated in FY2003.

 However, TEPCO itself still does not know where the water is coming from. TEPCO’s initial goal of “zero generation of contaminated water” is now beyond reach, and the company has replaced it with the target of “reducing the amount of contaminated water to 100 tons per day by the year 2013.
In fact, most of the treated water is “still under treatment.

 Once the facilities are completed, will the water in the tanks be discharged into the ocean?

 Of the 1.29 million tons of water in the tanks as of March of this year, only 10,000 tons, or less than 1%, has not been treated at Alps. TEPCO has described the other water as “treated” water.

September 12, 2022 - Posted by | Fukushima, Fukushima 2022 | ,

1 Comment »

  1. With generating capacity gone and powerless cut, there should be an evacuation of people, for a hundred miles by zaprozhia. GRAVE risk of fuel storage pools, draining, causing catastrophic nuclear fires.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Tim Hanson | September 12, 2022 | Reply

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