Waterborne radioactive levels in Fukushima plant pit unchanged from 2011

July 27, 2013

THE ASAHI SHIMBUN

Water in a pit on the grounds of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant has been found to contain high levels of radioactive substances, the plant operator said July 27.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said the radioactive water likely flowed into the pit during the initial stages of the March 2011 reactor meltdowns because the elevated figures are of levels found in the plant compound in the immediate aftermath of the nuclear disaster.

According to TEPCO, 2.35 billion becquerels of radioactive cesium were detected per liter of water that was sampled July 26 from a cable pit on the ocean side of the No. 2 reactor.

The breakdown was 750 million becquerels of cesium-134 and 1.6 billion becquerels of cesium-137.

A liter of the water was also found to contain 750 million becquerels of radioactive substances that emit beta rays, such as strontium.

Those concentration levels are almost the same as measurements taken during the early phases of the disaster, TEPCO said.

"We believe the highly radioactive water is staying within the pit," a TEPCO official said, adding that the utility will nevertheless check carefully for possible leaks into surrounding soil and seal the ground to block such leaks from reaching the sea.

THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
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Workers in the rain install underground walls to prevent contaminated groundwater from flowing into the ocean on July 22. (Pool)

Workers in the rain install underground walls to prevent contaminated groundwater from flowing into the ocean on July 22. (Pool)

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  • Workers in the rain install underground walls to prevent contaminated groundwater from flowing into the ocean on July 22. (Pool)

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