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Gov't wants to buy abandoned Fukushima land to store radioactive waste

28 Comments

The government said Wednesday it would like to buy up large tracts of abandoned land in the 20-kilometer no-go zone around the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in order to build long-term storage facilities for contaminated soil and radioactive waste.

Environment Minister Goshi Hosono, who is also the minister in charge of handling the nuclear crisis, outlined the government's plan during a meeting with Fukushima Gov Yuhei Sato in Fukushima City, NHK reported.

The plan calls for the government to buy up or lease land that has been abandoned in the Futaba area where radiation doses are likely to exceed 100 millisieverts per year. Hosono also met with the mayors of the eight municipalities that make up the Futaba area.

The facilities, which would have concrete walls, will be used to store containers of contaminated soil and radioactive waste from the no-go zone and other areas in and around Fukushima Prefecture.

The waste will initially be stored for three years in short-term repositories while the government constructs bigger facilities for storage over a 30-year period.

Hosono said he envisioned the biggest facility would cover an area of 5 square kilometers and be able to hold up to 28 million cubic meters of waste.

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28 Comments
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Hosono said he envisioned the biggest facility would cover an area of 5 square kilometers and be able to hold up to 28 million cubic meters of waste.

for what price? btw, land belongs to "tepco" or private owners (how many)?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Basically, because nobody else wants to take it, they just want to leave the crap there.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Makes sense that area will be a toxic one for a very very long time anyway.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Yesterday there were 2 very good tv shows talking about all of this mess up in Fukushima, one with Beat Takeshi and the other on News Station, the LDP, the Liberal Democratic Party and TEPCO, Tokyo Electric are or were arms in arms making $$$$$$ hand over fist to fall over themselves into building as many of these nuclear power plants and now we have this stupid, horrible, dangerous situation! Fukushima is only 1 out of over 50 nuclear power plants here in Japan, so will the Japanese government have enough money to buy all the land in Japan after it becomes a nuclear waste dump??

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wish they would pay Dairy farmer Naoto Matsumura for his farm in Tomioka then maybe he would leave the exclusion zone. At least those who do not wish to sell their land in the Futaba area can lease it so this facility can be built. Although I personally would sell cause there is really no going back to that land anymore.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This will work out if the landowners get a fair price for a sale or lease. Most don't want to return, so why not get compensated?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Provided the price they pay is fair, this sounds like the best idea they've had so far.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I hope for the Fukushima residents that the compensation would be enough to rebuild even a small but decent home(and maybe a small family business) somewhere else.

On the other hand, the Japanese government (aka taxpayers) will now take the tab for the nuclear wasteland instead of tasking TEPCO, who will just ask the government for funds ... again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Probably the only sensible option. I just hope the landowners are given a fair price - say 2 times the market value before the nuclear disaster. It is only fair to give them real compensation for the loss of their homes and businesses so as they can buy property elsewhere in Fukushima or Japan.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Certainly don't want them to put the waste anywhere else! No point in destroying any other areas in Japan. One is enough... Fill it up and buy the waste from other countries and store it there as well... That will pay for it! Sorry to the folks in that area that will have to move, but them's the breaks...

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Am I missing something here? The government orders the people to leave "for their safety", but now the land is "abandoned". This seems like a VERY shady way for the government to make land-grabs.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Clearly this is the ONLY option for this waste, the land is all worthless from a market standpoint, pay the owners enough to cover any mortgages etc so they can make a fresh start in a place of their choosing.

Heck if there is enough space they can also use it for waste from the rest of Tohoku that can be re-built.

This has to be permanent & the govt cant BS saying its temporary, clearly there is going to be a large area where effectively people will no longer live, time to face that fact & get on with it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Once again the J-government is a few months behind in deciding to do the obvious.

BurakuminDes: "I just hope the landowners are given a fair price - say 2 times the market value before the nuclear disaster."

I hope so, too, but my guess is they'll be offered about 10% at best.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It is the existing mortgages that hurt people.

There was an interview on the tube with one women. She had signed the bank papers in the morning, and the tsunami wiped it off the map that afternoon.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

now, weren;t they just considering dividing and storing the waste among various prefectures? we must all share the burden and suffering of fukushima, we are japanese, we must gaman and spread the nuclear waste around our great country.. and now it finally dawns on them to do the obvious?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

100 millisieverts per year is 100 times the national allowed limit and 5 times the current limit of 20 millisieverts per year for Fukushima Prefecture, that is a high amount of radiation when the normal level allowed for any nuclear power plant worker would be 50 millisieverts per year.

In principle it would sound like the right thinking but the logistics will be a nightmare. Any major construction, and this would be a very major one would require disturbing the top soil and debris removal which in itself would throw up clouds of radioactive dust which would further contaminate other areas.

The construction work would require thousands of construction trained worker with all the various building skills. All the workers would be required to wear full protection clothing and face masks. Doing heavy labor work under those conditions and especially in the heat of the summer will be very hard on the work force. It will require a system of cleaning down the workers before they remove their protection suits.

The temporary building put around No1 reactor building was very difficult. It was constructed off site in a lego fashion and put in place around the reactor building using remote control cranes and five large electric fans to get each panel into the right position.

Some problems could be over come by using prefabricated construction.

The project would take years and the length of time a worker is exposed to 100 millisieverts per year will limit their time to less than five years.

The government is currently reviewing the exclusion zone and will make a decision in March. Basically all areas within the exclusion zone which are contaminated with less than 20 millisieverts per year will be lifted and former residents allowed to return. Areas contaminated between 20 to 50 millisieverts per year, the former residents will be "advised" not to return. Areas with contamination higher than 50 millisieverts per year, the former residents will be told they can never return.

The government has also lifted the exclusion zone around the second Fukushima nuclear power plant for 8 kms. TEPCO is hoping to restart that power plant but the governor has stated his opposition.

By the time the construction work begins people could be living inside the exclusion zone again.

It may make more sense, at least economically, to build it outside of the current exclusion zone.

The waste would only come from within the prefecture and the nuclear plant and not the debris from the 3/11 earthquake and tsunami.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

So, soon Japan will also have the world's largest radioactive material dump.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

For once these idiots total insensitivity may actually be spot on... heck... why not. Its already contaminated.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Futaba area is very close to the sea so future tsunamis would also have to be part of the construction plans.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Perfectly sensible plan, for once.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They must have read our comments, we did post that solution numerous times.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The environment ministry has gone from a nothing ministry to one of the biggest, richest ministries in Japan. It has become a cash cow and certain companies are profiting highly from the 'decontamination' work that has been shown to be ineffective.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

1st rationale response in how many months? Does this mean Gov. Ishihara's buddies at the burning facilities will not continue apace to spread radioactive smoke over TOKYO???

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Zichi is right it's scary high rads, I hope the building is a prefab one with less people to use to put together like a concrete lead lined gumbo shed or something.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hosono San, first ypu have to tell and convinced the land owners that the areas are no longer suited for normal and human living conditions. Radioactive waste will still emit radiation to their surrounding neighbors. Either by air, soil and sea. That area is doomed up to their 3rd generations. Stop using Nuke Power Plants. Reusable energy is still the best.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"Fukushima is only 1 out of over 50 nuclear power plants here in Japan," Actually the Fukushima disaster involved 3 nuclear plants and the odd adjacent spent fuel storage site. I'm surprised they don't just ship the waste to Tokyo. The governor here is quite fond of it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There are 54 nuclear reactors in something like 18 nuclear power plants.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

FINALLY, a good idea from the J-gov.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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