December 6, 2013
The International Atomic Energy Agency has suggested that Tokyo Electric Power Co., operator of the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant, consider discharging less harmful radioactive water from the site into the sea.
The recommendation was included in a preliminary report released Wednesday, following a 10-day review by IAEA’s 19-member team — headed by Juan Carlos Lentijo, the agency’s Director of Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Waste Technology — to observe the decommissioning process at the plant, stricken by an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
Tepco last month started the delicate operation of removing more than 1,000 nuclear fuel-rod assemblies from the spent fuel pool inside the damaged No. 4 reactor building. Tepco expects to complete that process by the end of 2014.