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Japan confirms plan to release contaminated water from Fukushima into Pacific Ocean Updated: 2021-04-13 11:15:28 KST

After years of back and forth, the Japanese government has finally confirmed it'll release radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant into the ocean.
Deeply concerned about how Japan will carry the plan, the South Korean government has just condemned Tokyo's decision.
For more, we connect to our Choi Jeong-yoon at the news center.

Mark, on Tuesday morning, the Japanese government said in a cabinet meeting that it will start releasing the water into the Pacific Ocean in 2 years.
This is the first official statement after years of back and forth on how to process the radioactive water that's been stored since 2011 when a powerful earthquake and tsunami hit the Fukushima nuclear power plant.
More than 1.2-5 million tons of contaminated water are stored in tanks, of which only 30 percent meets the standard for release of radioactive materials into the sea.
Although Japan claims it will eliminate most of radiation in the water, around 60 radioactive substances, including tritium, cannot be removed with technology currently available.
So the Japanese government aims if it can to decrease the concentration of the radioactive substances in the water.
It will tighten by 40 times its original standard of releasing tritium.
And it will dilute the radioactive level to 1,5-hundred becquerels per liter.
With approval by nuclear authorities still required, it will likely take a couple of years until the actual release starts.
The water will be let out slowly until between 2041 and 2051,.. which is the timeframe Tokyo has set for the plant's total decommissioning.
After the announcement, South Korea held an emergency meeting and harshly condemned Tokyo's plan saying it not only puts at risk the health of people in Japan, but also of Japan's neighbors.
Seoul also called the decision unfair and unilateral saying that it was made without enough understanding or negotiations with surrounding countries.
Pledging to take its concerns to the Japanese government, South Korea asked for transparent information and a thorough inspection of the process.
That's all I have at this hour. Back to you, Mark.
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