A group of about 200 local residents in Kami, Miyagi Prefecture, on Friday blocked a team from the Environment Ministry as it arrived to inspect a candidate site for storing contaminated waste from the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Three sites in Miyagi have been shortlisted as sites for storing more than 3,000 tons of radioactive waste -- Kami, Kurihara and Taiwa.
When inspectors arrived to conduct surveys at the Kami site, they were confronted by angry residents, making it impossible for them to enter the area, Fuji TV reported. By the time evening had fallen, the protesters were still there, forcing the Environment Ministry team to leave.
The residents are opposed to having any nuclear waste stored in the mountainous area. The government's plan is to bury the waste in an underground facility and part of the Environment Ministry team's job was to conduct drilling surveys of the soil.
The ministry had originally intended to finish the site inspections by November of this year, but in the wake of recent developments, that may now be delayed, a ministry spokesman said.© Japan Today