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How to deal with tritium?

December 25, 2013


Experts study how to deal with tritium



A panel of experts has begun to assess the risks and technological challenges of handling wastewater containing radioactive tritium at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The treatment of tritium poses a major challenge at the plant, as removing the substance from water has proven difficult.

Nine experts on radioactive substances and other fields met at the industry ministry on Wednesday. They aim to reach a conclusion by the end of March.

They agreed to identify the risks of keeping tritium-tainted water inside tanks, or releasing it into the ocean. They say they will also look into technical difficulties when developing technologies to remove tritium from water.
They say studying the different options will help determine what action will be the most feasible.

The ministry expects the tainted water at the plant will likely accumulate to about 800 thousand tons in the future.

A team from the International Atomic Energy Agency, dispatched to the plant earlier this month, compiled a report suggesting that Japan consider releasing the water into the ocean after it is diluted to below government-set standards.

The Japanese government will need to win the understanding of residents before undertaking the task.

Dec. 25, 2013 - Updated 23:22 UTC

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