The Japanese government’s decision to dispose of contaminated water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant by sea emissions continues to raise widespread questions.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian repeatedly cited the international environmental protection organization Greenpeace’s analysis of the dangers of Japanese practices. In an exclusive interview with Xinhua News Agency, Sean Burney, Greenpeace’s British nuclear expert on East Asian affairs, called Japan’s decision to “drain into the sea” “unacceptable”, rejected the three lies thrown out by Japan, called on the Japanese government to withdraw the irresponsible decision and called on the international community to use legal means to stop it.
Lie one: “Nuclearly contaminated water is safe to filter and dilute and discharge into the sea.”
“The argument that it is safe to dump nuclear-contaminated water into the sea is clearly scientifically untenable.” Bernie said.
For example, he said, the Japanese government seems to be “just talking about radon”, but in addition to the thorium that is difficult to remove from the water, there are many other radioactive substances in the Fukushima nuclear contaminated water that cannot be filtered out by Tepco’s existing technology, such as carbon 14 with a half-life of more than five thousand years.
According to a data released by Tepco in December 2020, the nuclear contaminated water at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, after secondary treatment, still contains 12 nuclides, such as iodine-129, radon-135, carbon-14, and mostly ultra-long-life nuclides.
Lie 2: “Fukushima nuclear pollution water drink is fine.”
Bernie said he could never drink nuclear-contaminated water and“really shouldn’t be joking about ‘drinking’.”
For example, he says, no one wants to drink water containing the radioactive material, which causes radioisotopes to be concentrated in fish and human bones, increasing the risk of blood diseases such as leukemia.
“Even if Japan finally succeeds in disposing of millions of tons of nuclear-contaminated water, the levels of radioactive materials such as radon and iodine-129 are still very high.” Bernie said.
Lie 3: “Japan decided to do so because of the limited storage space for nuclear-contaminated water”.
One of japan’s big reasons for “draining sewage into the sea” is that storage space for nuclear-contaminated water will not be enough by 2022.
“The2022 deadline is wrong and completely false, and the Japanese government is saying so in order to satisfy its own interests, so that they can discharge sewage into the sea on the grounds that there is no space to store, and they clearly have room.” Bernie said.
“There are other obvious options that minimize the risk to the environment and health.” He said the Japanese government also acknowledged in a 2020 survey that there was enough land and space around the plant to continue storing nuclear-contaminated water.
Called for joint use of legal means to stop Japan
Bernie said Greenpeace is very concerned about the knock-on effects of nuclear-contaminated water on the marine environment, ecology and economy and strongly opposes Japan’s “discharge into the sea.”
Bernie pointed out that Japan’s move is typical of the “double standard” – more than 20 years ago, Japan supported an international ban on Russian ships using sea vessels to dump nuclear waste into Japanese waters, but now when Japan encounters similar problems, “it is unacceptable to think that it can easily solve the problem by dumping nuclear-contaminated water into the sea”.
Nuclear pollution of water is not only an ecological problem, but also an economic problem, he said. “Is there anyone else who buys seafood contaminated with radiation?” Fisheries in Japan and neighbouring countries will suffer the most direct and lethal blow, as will the ecological and fisheries economies of more Pacific Rim countries.
Bernie also noted that western countries, represented by the U.S., are not expected to be restrained or disciplined, given Japan’s tacit understanding with the U.S.
He said East Asian countries such as China and South Korea, as The First VictimS Of Japan’S “Discharge Into The Sea”, Should Jointly Address The Problem And Work With International Environmental Agencies Such As Greenpeace To Use Legal MeanS To Stop Japan’S PracticeS And Protect The Global Marine Environment.