It looks like Japanese authorities are going to be moving forward with approving the plan to dump radioactive water into the ocean from the Fukushima disaster that took place years ago.
It has been billions of dollars and years of cleaning up and the problem is still not over.
They've been struggling for a long time now, tossing around a variety of ideas on what might be best for how they should approach the clean-up. They still need to address the problem of removing radioactive waste and solving the issue with the limited space they are dealing with.
According to a panel of experts who had been advising the government on what might be the best solution, they've suggested that dumping it all into the ocean is the superior choice.
It also happens to likely be the cheapest and quickest method for them to rid themselves of the problem too.
It isn't a decision that is sitting comfortable with many who still have concerns about what the consequences of that might be.
Locals, including plenty of fishermen in the area, have expressed outrage and concern with dumping it into the ocean. They have been struggling for years to bring life back to the area, trying to foster a new economy for the region and their reputation in business suffered extensive damage and still has not fully repaired since the disaster. Many in the market are still too cautious to travel to the region or try eating any products that come from the region.
Dumping the waste into the ocean will further worsen the problem for them and threaten their livelihood as a result.
Of course, we can expect that the government is likely going to opt for the cheaper solution though, even if there might be some long term consequences that are still yet to be known.
Apparently, it was either dump it into the ocean or attempt to evaporate it.
You can find a variety of opinions arguing for or against the idea, with a number of experts such as the former head of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission suggesting that dumping it into the ocean would be the best option.
It is expected that TEPCO will ultimately run out of space by 2022, and face a real serious issue then on how to deal with the problem; the contaminated water that is being stored in tanks right now at the site needs to be dealt with (you can see what the tanks look like in the image above, as well as get an idea of the limited space).
They have insisted that dumping it into the ocean is the more secure option for them and many suspect that the government will approve of this "solution" sometime soon that has been recommended to them from the panel. For more than a year now the government has suggested that this was going to be the move they would go with to address the problem they face with the waste water, though various government actors have publicly argued over whether or not the government had already made a final decision on the matter.
pic2 via Bloomberg