Japan mulling financial support for solving contaminated water in Fukushima

Tokyo, Aug. 7 (Xinhua-ANI): The Japanese government is mulling budget funds to support the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) in dealing with contaminated water in its crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, said government officials Wednesday.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a press conference that the contaminated water problem is "a very serious one" and there is no country in the world has ever built the large underground wall like in the Fukushima complex.

The top government spokesman said that the country need to step further to support the project that would build the water- shielding wall with frozen soil at the crippled nuclear power plant.

Japan's Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry is also considering putting the costs into the fiscal 2014 budget request. If it is approved, it will be the first government funding to help TEPCO deal with the problem of groundwater seeping to mix with contaminated water in the reactor buildings.

TEPCO has struggled to deal with radiation-tainted water at the nuclear power plant since an earthquake-triggered tsunami destroyed its power and cooling systems, causing multiple meltdowns and radiation leaks, in March 2011.

Last month, TEPCO found the highest level of radioactive tritium in seawater samples and attribute the spike to contaminated groundwater that seeped into the sea.

TEPCO has tried to freez the surrounding soil to make an underground wall in a move to prevent more water from leaking. The wall is built 1.8 meters underground, but according to the spokesman of TEPCO last week that, some of the underground water may have seeped over the wall.

To create frozen soil, pipes to run coolant will be inserted around the plant's reactor buildings and the wall is expected to be 1.4 km long with a cost of tens of billions of yen.

About 400 tons of groundwater seep into the reactor buildings every day and get mixed with toxic water that has been used to cool the crippled reactors, and about 300 tons of contaminated water flew into the sea from the plant daily, according to the government. (Xinhua-ANI)

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