It is known that the Japanese government's policy to purify and release radioactive contaminated water from Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant to the Pacific Ocean will be finalized on the 27th.

The Mainichi Shimbun and the Tokyo Shimbun announced on the 17th that the Japanese government is planning to release the ocean at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant'Ministry' Meeting on Decommissioning and Contaminated Water Countermeasures' held on the 27th.

When the Japanese government's maritime discharge policy is finalized, the nuclear power plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power, will immediately begin designing the discharge facility and proceed with the facility construction after a safety review by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Accordingly, the full-scale release is expected to begin around October 2022.

TEPCO aims to complete the discharge of contaminated water, which has increased to 1.23 million tons as of September, into the Pacific Ocean over 20 to 30 years, and in 2041 to 2051, when the decommissioning of Fukushima nuclear power plants 1 to 4 is completed. I have it upright.

However, there is strong public opinion in Japan that the fishermen in the Fukushima region should continue to store onshore, and neighboring countries such as Korea and China are also opposed to the release, so controversy is expected to continue in the future release process.

On the 16th, Hiroshi Kajiyama, the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (Gyeongsan Prize) said, "Considering that the quantity (amount of contaminated water) increases day by day, we cannot always postpone without deciding the (disposal) policy. "He said he would decide sooner or later.

At the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, rainwater and groundwater flow into the circulating cooling water that cools the molten nuclear fuel in the reactor that caused an explosion during the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, causing 160 to 170 tons of contaminated water per day.

TEPCO filters this water with a device called ALPS, and stores it under the name of'treated water' rather than'polluted water'.

However, out of the 1.1 million tons of ALPS treated water as of the end of June, the concentration of radioactive substances other than tritium (tritium), which is difficult to remove, reached 1~20,000 times the emission standard, reaching 6%.

In addition, less than 27% of those meeting the Japanese government's emission standards, including 15%, 5-10 times 19%, and 1-5 times 34%, respectively, and the remaining 70% or more exceeding the emission standards. It has been shown to contain substances.

Accordingly, the Japanese government and TEPCO have announced that they will release them through a reprocessing procedure to lower the pollutant concentration below the legal standard with ALPS.

It is explained that tritium, which is a hydrogen isotope that emits radiation, is diluted with water enough to meet the World Health Organization (WHO) drinking water standards, lowered the concentration to less than one 40th of the Japanese standard, and then released.

TEPCO recently announced that it was able to reduce the concentration of eight major radioactive substances other than tritium from 2,190 times the standard value to a sixth level in a reprocessing effect verification test using ALPS.

However, there are doubts about the performance of ALPS, as it was found that'carbon 14', which was not included in the 62 nuclear materials that were lowered in the concentration of ALPS, was contained in the treated water more than originally expected.

In particular, it is pointed out that even if the concentration of tritium is lowered, the total amount of discharge over a long period of time remains the same.

The total amount of tritium contained based on 1.2 million tons of contaminated water at the Fukushima nuclear power plant is about 860 trillion becquerels (㏃).

TEPCO insisted on discharging because by October 2022, a total of 1.37 million tons of contaminated water storage tanks, including the expansion, would be full, making it impossible to store onshore, and to secure work space for decommissioning in the future. There is.

In the final report compiled in February, the so-called expert under the Gyeongsan Province department in charge also suggested ocean discharge and air discharge as possible measures to dispose of contaminated water, adding an opinion that ocean discharge carried out by general nuclear power plants is more desirable.

Since then, the Japanese government has heard opinions from the representatives of 29 organizations with interests such as the National Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives (Jeoneoyeon) seven times, but opinions against ocean discharge have become mainstream.

On the 15th, Hiroshi Jeon, Chairman of the Fisheries Research Institute, met with Gyeongsan Sangsang Kajiyama on the 15th, saying, "It can have a devastating effect on the future of fishing." I have revealed my position.

(Photo = Yonhap News)