Demonstration against the decision to discharge treated water from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Seoul into the Pacific on April 20.

Japan’s decision to dump contaminated water from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant into the ocean is causing great discontent in Japan, but also in neighboring countries. It intervenes in a context of deleterious relations, in particular with the Chinese and the Koreans. Beijing announced on April 26 that it had obtained from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) the integration of Chinese experts into the working group that will be set up to monitor and evaluate the Japanese project. China had previously criticized the spill, adding that the ocean was not “The Japanese sewer system”.

Announced on April 13, the operation should result in the release, into the Pacific, of 1.25 million tonnes of water resulting from the cooling of damaged reactors, following the earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011, in the northeast of the archipelago. This water is stored in more than 1,000 reservoirs at the damaged power plant and its volume is increasing by nearly 140 tonnes per day. The discharge should begin in 2023 and last for the time of the dismantling of the site, that is to say between thirty and forty years.

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Tokyo power company (plant owner Tepco) says water will be released after passing through its ALPS absorption filtration systems (“Advanced Liquid Processing System”). The device makes it possible to reduce the presence of nuclides that it still contains, in order to reduce “At least the risks associated with radioactive materials “, Says the Ministry of the Economy.

As the filtration systems do not allow the removal of tritium, the water will be diluted so that the level of this nuclide is lowered. Showing his confidence in Tepco, the Japanese Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Taro Aso does not hesitate to consider the water thus treated as ” drinkable “. Without convincing for all that.

“If the water is pure, pour it in Tokyo”

Besides China, North Korea and Russia criticized the Japanese move. “It is a crime against humanity, justified by economic reasons, while other options are possible to avoid the discharge of water”, wrote, on April 14, the Choson Sinbo, a newspaper close to North Korea published in Japan, while Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, shared the “Serious concerns” from Moscow, who is waiting “Transparency” from Japan.

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