China and South Korea rebuke Japan over planned nuclear plant water into the sea
Chika Mori and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
China and South Korea have rebuked Japan over plans to release nuclear plant water into the sea. Of course, the nuance in Japan is releasing “treated water.” However, this isn’t fooling China and South Korea – and other nations disillusioned by Japan’s handling of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant crisis that began over ten years ago.
Zhao Lijian, a spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry of China, uttered, “The ocean is not Japan’s trash can. The Pacific is not Japan’s sewers.”
President Moon Jae-in of South Korea is equally alarmed by the proposals of the Japanese government. He said, “The Republic of Korea is concerned very much over the decision to release nuclear plant [water] because we are the closest geographically and share the ocean.”
NHK reports, “This water undergoes a treatment process that removes most radioactive material, but it still contains radioactive tritium. The treated water is then stored.”
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said, “[Releasing] the treated water is an unavoidable task to decommission the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and reconstruct the Fukushima area.”
However, the handling of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear plant crisis in the last ten years is bound to create internal and external unease. Indeed, it is obvious that Japan hadn’t planned for the worst-case scenario. Therefore, the proposal to release nuclear plant water into the sea isn’t welcomed by the fishing sector in Fukushima to regional nations including China and South Korea.
Reuters reports, “Japan will release more than 1 million tonnes of contaminated water from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea, the government said on Tuesday, a move China called “extremely irresponsible”, while South Korea summoned Tokyo’s ambassador in Seoul to protest.”
It is essential that Japan considers and involves regional nations who are alarmed by the proposals of Japan. Similarly, the Japanese government should listen to the views of the fishing sector in Fukushima that is opposed to releasing nuclear plant water into the sea.
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