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

No decontamination may now be an option

April 25, 2012

Highly radioactive areas may not receive clean-up




The Japanese government says NOT carrying out decontamination work may be an option in areas near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant where radiation readings are likely to stay high for at least a decade.

The government is drawing up plans to clean up radioactive substances in areas near the nuclear plant so that residents who have been forced to evacuate can return.

It said for the first time on Sunday that atmospheric radiation levels may remain higher than 20 millisieverts per year in some areas even 10 years from now, a level the government considers difficult for people to go home.

Some officials argue decontamination would not proceed smoothly in such areas, and that a significant reduction of radiation levels is difficult with existing technology.

Others say money should be spent supporting long term evacuees rather than on costly decontamination efforts.

The government says it will consider the opinions of evacuees and affected municipalities in deciding which areas to decontaminate and scheduling the work.

It has already announced plans to clean up areas with current radiation readings of up to 50 millisieverts per year by the end of March 2014.

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