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Japan’s radioactive waste dumping and China’s concern

Japan will release the nuclear contaminated water of Fukushima into the ocean
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Beijing, 7 December 2021 (GNP/ TDI): Ambassador Liu Xiaoming expressed grave concern on the behalf of his country over Japan’s ongoing preparations for releasing the nuclear contaminated water of Fukushima into the ocean. Liu Xiaoming is Representative of China on Korean Peninsula Affairs.

The Ambassador underscored that the unilateral decision of Japan to discharge the contaminated water into the sea is wrong as it will have widespread repercussions. China is deeply concerned about Japan’s decision.

Japan will release nuclear contaminated water of Fukushima

Japan made this decision without making all relevant information public, without conducting full consultation with neighboring countries and the international community as well as without exhausting all safe means of disposal. Such a decision is widely unaccepted by the international community.

Ambassador Liu Xiaoming urged the international community should firmly reject and protest Japan’s decision. It is imperative that Japan immediately revokes such a wrong decision and stop all preparation regarding the discharge of the nuclear contaminated water into the ocean.

Japan will dump more than 1m tonnes of contaminated water from the wrecked Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea. It argues that the release will not be unsafe as the water will be thoroughly processed to eliminate all radioactive elements.

Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster happened in 2011 because of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. It was classified on the International Nuclear Event Scale (INES) as Level 7. Due to the accident, radionuclides cesium 137Cs, and 134Cs were released into the ocean. Consequently, the marine life of the adjacent sea was exposed to radioactive materials.

137Cs and 134Cs are key fission products in nuclear processes. They have half-lives of 30 and 2.1 years, respectively. The two compose an essential source of radioactive contamination of the environment. Major releases of 137Cs and 134Cs have come from the Chernobyl accident, nuclear weapons testing, and the nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at Windscale.

According to experts, radiation in seawater can hurt marine animals; it can outrightly kill them, pass radioactive material up the food chain or create bizarre mutations in the offspring.

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