Fukushima governor visits proposed radioactive waste dump site
Fukushima Gov Yuhei Sato on Wednesday visited a site in Futaba that currently stands as a potential candidate for the storage of radioactive waste and debris from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant crisis.
Sato told reporters that there were some remaining points of concern that could only be verified by an on-site inspection, Fuji TV reported. Sato said he is still discussing with Environment Minister Hiroyuki Nagahama to confirm whether or not the site meets the government’s guidelines for a storage facility.
Although Futaba Town Mayor Katsutaka Idogawa did not attend the inspection, a spokesperson said representatives from seven other towns and villages in the area have agreed to the proposed facility.
Idogawa has opposed the plan from the beginning, saying that the land was sacred to the residents and their ancestors, and that if a storage facility is built in the area, residents will never be able to return to their land.
He also said that the central government continues to disregard the views of local municipalities, making it impossible for there to be mutual trust.
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.
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.