Fukushima plant tunnels clear of radioactive water


The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says it has finished removing highly radioactive water from underground tunnels linked to the reactor buildings.

More than 10,000 tons of highly contaminated water flowed into the tunnels outside the buildings for reactors No.2 and 3. Experts feared that the water might seep into the sea.

The concern led the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, to try and block any more tainted water from entering the tunnels.

The firm has been filling the tunnels with cement to pump out contaminated water since November.

It finished draining the No.2 reactor building’s tunnels late last month. The company says it also completed similar work on the tunnels connected to the No.3 reactor building on Thursday.

The firm will continue the work to fill the tunnels with cement until sometime late next month.

The utility initially attempted to freeze radioactive water in sections where the tunnels connect to the reactor buildings. But this did not work.

The government and TEPCO had placed top priority on addressing the highly radioactive water in the tunnels due to a fear that it might badly pollute the sea near the plant. The latest achievement will significantly reduce that risk. 
Source: NHK 
http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/news/20150731_01.html

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