Tokyo, April 27 (Jiji Press)–Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. <9501> on Wednesday reported a slowdown in the pace of increase in radioactive water at its meltdown-hit Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.
As a result, TEPCO expects to reach the full storage capacity for water treated through water cleanup equipment by around summer or autumn 2023, later than the previously expected period of spring the same year.
In fiscal 2021 through last month, the daily increase of radioactive water at the northeastern Japan power plant averaged 130 tons, down from 140 tons in fiscal 2020.
At the plant, rainfall in fiscal 2021 was larger than usual years. But TEPCO said it managed to reduce the amount of contaminated water accumulating at the plant partly by repairing the damaged roof of a reactor building.
At the plant, radioactive water keeps increasing, because TEPCO uses water to cool damaged reactors while rainwater and groundwater flow into damaged buildings. The company treats the radioactive water to remove most of the radioactive substances.
The government and TEPCO have decided to release the treated water, which still contains tritium, into the ocean after diluting it. Facilities for the water release, including an underground tunnel, are scheduled to be built by spring 2023.
It is necessary, however, to obtain understanding from locals and the fishery industry before releasing the water.
Akira Ono, president of Fukushima Daiichi Decontamination & Decommissioning Engineering Company, a TEPCO internal organization, on Wednesday promised to give explanations thoroughly without sticking to the schedule.