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information about Fukushima published in English in Japanese media info publiée en anglais dans la presse japonaise

Farmers & toxic waste

March 6, 2015

Disposal of farming-related radioactive waste slow



Mar. 6, 2015 - Updated 13:54 UTC+1


An NHK survey has found that the disposal of contaminated grasses and other farming waste has been slow in most of the municipalities affected by fallout from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident.

Farmers are calling for the pace to be speeded up.

In the March 2011 nuclear crisis, radioactive fallout tainted grass, compost, tree logs used for cultivation of mushrooms, and other farming and forestry material.

The law requires municipalities to dispose of the matter if the levels of their radioactive substances are below locally manageable levels of 8,000 becquerels per kilogram.

137 municipalities in five prefectures, Fukushima, Iwate, Miyagi, Tochigi and Gunma, told NHK they kept or still keep the waste.

About 30 percent, or 41 municipalities, said they are working on disposing the waste. Among them, only 8 municipalities said they have finished.

Local governments attribute the slow pace to residents' disapproval of waste incineration and disposing of the ashes in their neighborhood. They also cite a lack of facilities.

Many farmers are still forced to store the waste on their private land. Experts say incineration and other methods will become more difficult as it will rot over a long period.


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