Title: Japan’s cleanup lags from tsunami, nuke accident
Author: MARI YAMAGUCHI and ELAINE KURTENBACH
Date: Mar. 10, 2013
[...] It will leave Fukushima, whose huge farm and fisheries industry has been walloped by radiation fears, with 31 million tons of nuclear waste or more. Around Naraha, huge temporary dumps of radioactive waste, many football fields in size and stacked two huge bags deep, are scattered around the disaster zone
The cleanups extend beyond Fukushima, to Iwate in the north and Chiba, which neighbors Tokyo, in the south. And the concerns are not limited to radiation. A walk through areas in Miyagi and Iwate that already were cleared of debris finds plenty of toxic detritus, such as batteries from cell phones, electrical wiring, plastic piping and gas canisters.
Japan has the technology to safely burn up most toxins at very high temperatures, with minimal emissions of PCBs, mercury and other poisons. But mounds of wood chips in a seaside processing area near Kesennuma were emitting smoke into the air one recent winter afternoon, possibly from spontaneous combustion.
Workers at that site had high-grade gas masks, an improvement from the early days, when many working in the disaster zone had only surgical masks, at most, to protect them from contaminated dust and smoke. [...]
See also: Niigata Gov. Hirohiko Izumida condemns disposal of disaster debris from Iwate Prefecture as general waste as a “criminal act”
Published: March 10th, 2013 at 6:46 am ET
- Report: 12 million yen “to censor Twitter” being spent by city starting to burn disaster debris September 18, 2012
- UPDATE: Plutonium measured in 3/11 disaster debris December 22, 2012
- Shock? Major Japan Paper: Cancer risk in Fukushima ‘probably infinitesimal’ — More radioactive contamination should be allowed in food and where people live — Don’t question burning disaster debris March 3, 2013
- Fukushima will start burning radioactive waste — 100,000 Bq/kg to be incinerated — 1 billion pounds of debris in exclusion zone -Mainichi April 8, 2012
- UK Newspaper: Multiple sets of fuel rods at Unit 4 reportedly damaged AFTER disaster; Explosions to blame? — AP: “Assemblies and their handles may have been damaged when big pieces of debris fell” November 18, 2013