September 29, 2014
Landowners briefed on Fukushima waste storage plan
Landowners near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant have voiced frustration at the government’s plan to buy up their properties to build intermediate storage facilities for radioactive soil and other waste.
About 150 people took part in an Environment Ministry briefing on Monday. It was the first in a series of sessions aimed at outlining compensation plans for landowners in Futaba and Okuma towns.
The move comes as the Fukushima prefectural government earlier accepted construction of storage facilities in the 2 towns.
Ministry officials said they plan to purchase land at around half of its value before the nuclear accident.
The officials said compensation for housing would depend on the age of buildings. They said landowners who decline to sell but allow usage of their plots would be paid 70 percent of the purchase price.
They said the prefecture would effectively cover the difference between the properties’ pre-disaster value and the amount of compensation.
Many landowners expressed their reservations.
A man from Futaba Town said the offered price fell short of what he expected, and that the officials spoke about the possibility of forcibly buying up land. He predicted that upcoming briefings would be rough.
A woman from Okuma Town said government officials seemed to care little about the feelings of people who will be deprived of their land.
The government wants to win landowners’ understanding, and start shipping contaminated waste to the storage facilities in January.