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Head of “Fukushima”. There is no need to extend the purpose of decommissioning

TOKYO (AP) – The head of the sunken Fukushima nuclear power plant says there is no need to extend the current goal of decommissioning 30-40 years later, despite uncertainties about the plant’s three reactors’ molten fuel.

Ten years after the sinking of its three reactors, the Fukushima Daiichi plant stabilized ten years after the massive earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan’s northeastern Japan in March 2011, but it faces new challenges.

Nuclear regulators have recently detected lethal levels of pollution under the covers of two reactors, the experimental removal of molten fuel residues from one reactor has been delayed for a year, and a recent earthquake could cause further damage to the reactors.

About 900 tons of molten fuel remains in the three damaged reactors of the plant, անվտանգ its safe disposal is a terrible task, which its operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. or TEPCO, և according to the government, it will take 30-40 years to complete. Removal of spent fuel from cooling pools has been delayed for up to five years.

But Akira Ono, who is also the director general of the plant and its decommissioning director, said he was not going to change the current goal of completing decommissioning in 2041-2051.

“I do not think we need to reconsider the target now,” Ono told The Associated Press in an online interview on Tuesday. “We will stick to the target of completion in 30 to 40 years, respectively, we will make a schedule և technology և development programs.”

He said that TEPCO intends to focus mainly on the next decade, and I hope that by the end of March it will release a new 10-year roadmap.

The fatal cesium levels recently found above the pre-control chamber of reactors No. 2 և 3 under shield plugs will not affect short-term decommissioning operations, but may complicate future projects.

Many things about the melted fuel that fell to the floor of the main chambers of the 1st, 2nd և 3rd junctions of the core remain unknown, Ono said, adding that it is too early to decide how the plant should look in the end. cleaning.

“It is a difficult question,” he said. “If you ask 10 people, everyone has different answers.” Local officials in Fukushima say they expect the plant complex to become a plain where people can walk freely.

Ono said that the final condition of the plant should be discussed by the government, local residents, experts, other stakeholders, and decided by consensus.

Some experts still doubt that all the remnants of molten fuel can be removed, suggesting a Chernobyl-style blockage of the plant. Ono, however, rejected that option, saying that a long-term refusal could pose a greater risk than controlled cleansing and hinder the region’s recovery.

Ono said that the removal of fossil fuel residues, I hope, will be in the right direction by the 2030s. “The next 10 years are for us to prepare for that goal,” he said.

As a result of the massive radiation from the reactors, about 160,000 people were evacuated from the vicinity of the station. Tens of thousands of people are still unable to return home.

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Follow Marie Yamaguchi on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/mariyamaguchi

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