Fukushima still feeds lawmakers’ concerns for West Coast
Paul C. Barton
June 3, 2012
More than 14 months after a massive earthquake ripped apart the Fukushima nuclear power complex in Japan, fears persist about how a follow-up natural disaster at the still-fragile site could impact the West Coast of the United States.
[Ron Wyden (Democrat-Oregon)], a senior member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, still shakes his head in disbelief with what he saw during an April visit to the Fukushima site.
What mortifies Wyden is [an accident causes the Unit 4's pool of spent fuel rods to drain], plus a possible follow-up earthquake or other disaster befalling the plant before the fuel rods can be made more secure. The Japanese utility, Tokyo Electric Power Co., is proposing to take 10 years to take care of the fuel rods.
“I think that’s too long,” the senator said when interviewed in his Capitol Hill office. “If that (the plant) ruptures, it’s bad news.”
Published: June 3rd, 2012 at 5:44 pm ET
- Largest US Newspaper Publisher: ‘Enough radioactivity to poison millions’ in Fukushima Unit 4 — Radiation to hit West Coast of US would be ‘far more’ than trace amounts if fuel rods exposed, says Senator June 3, 2012
- NHK: Fuel removal process underway at Unit 4 (VIDEOS) July 18, 2012
- Senator on National TV: I’m so concerned about Unit 4 fuel pool — Tepco’s plan must be sped up — “It’s very clear there are substantial health questions that have to be addressed now” (VIDEO) April 17, 2012
- Japan Diplomat: Concern fuel rods in Unit 4 pool are damaged — “Have they moved”? — Transfer process could go on for decades, not months October 22, 2013
- Warning from Japan’s Top Nuclear Official: I am “much more worried” about fuel in Fukushima Unit 4 — Rods may break open and release highly radioactive material — Beware risks from debris, a disaster if damaged — Removal may start Nov. 8 October 30, 2013