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

Local residents shocked at the idea of "sarcophagus"

July 21, 2016

Reactor decommissioning plan revised



A Japanese government body has revised its plan to decommission the reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in response to local opposition.

The revision ruled out the option of adopting a Chernobyl-style "sarcophagus" method that seals off disabled reactors with nuclear fuel inside.

The Nuclear Damage Compensation and Decommissioning Facilitation Corporation released the revised plan on Wednesday.

The body presented a technical report a week ago that mentioned the possibility of adopting the sarcophagus method for the first time, while saying it remained committed to removing fuel debris from the reactors.

The report faced backlash from the people in Fukushima Prefecture. Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Motoo Hayashi instructed the body to revise the plan.

The word "sarcophagus" has been deleted from the revised plan, which states that the method will not be adopted in the decommissioning process at the plant.

Shunsuke Kondo, the head of the body's technical committee, says he regrets the body's lack of consideration for the locals.

He said he will make sure the body communicates with the locals properly and places top priority on their thoughts.

Fukushima Governor Masao Uchibori said he wants the body to realize how shocked the Fukushima residents were with the word "sarcophagus."

He said he wants the body to proceed with the removal of fuel debris from the reactors in a safe manner, in line with the locals' desires.



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