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Fukushima: wastewater from ruined nuclear plant to be released from Thursday, Japan says

By illuminem briefings 🌎

Aug 23 2023 · 1 min read

Illuminem Voices
Environmental Sustainability · Pollution · ESG

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: Japan will begin releasing wastewater from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant this Thursday
• The decision is controversial as the water contains tritium, a radioactive substance
This move has encountered resistance from fishing communities, China, and various other groups and nations

🔭 The context: Following the devastating 2011 Fukushima disaster, over 1 million tonnes of water have been stored at the site
• Despite filtration, tritium remains in the water, raising concerns for environmental and human health

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: Radioactive releases into the ocean have global environmental implications
• While the UN’s nuclear watchdog approved the discharge, citing negligible risks, environmental groups like Greenpeace warn of lasting marine pollution

⏭️ What's next: As Japan embarks on this wastewater release, it'll be under intense scrutiny
• Results of tests on the discharged seawater are expected to be available next month, offering more clarity on the implications of this move

💬 One quote: “This is an outrage that violates the human rights of the people and communities of Fukushima, and other neighbouring prefectures and the wider Asia-Pacific region.” (Shaun Burnie, Greenpeace East Asia)

📈 One stat: About 1.3 million tonnes of treated water is being held on the Fukushima site, enough to fill 500 Olympic swimming pools
• The water will be diluted and released over the next 30 to 40 years

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