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TEPCO reveals record cesium level in Fukushima No. 1 well

Published time: February 14, 2014 15:09
AFP Photo / IAEA / Files

AFP Photo / IAEA / Files

A record high level of radioactive cesium has been found in groundwater beneath the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, it operator TEPCO revealed.

On February 13, Tokyo Electric Power Co. reported 37,000 becquerels of cesium-134 and 93,000 becquerels of cesium-137 were detected per liter of groundwater sampled from a monitoring well earlier that day.

Water samples were taken from the technical well, located next to the second power unit, some 50 meters from the coast. These figures (the total reading) are the highest of all the cesium measurements taken previously.

Experts do not rule out that radioactive water is leaking from an underground tunnel, which is located close to the second power unit on the seashore.

However, no exact reason for such a significant increase of radioactive cesium content in the groundwater has been given so far.

Japanese newspaper The Asahi Shimbun reported that the amount of radioactive chemicals seems to be increasing. On Feb. 12, the same sampling well had produced a combined cesium reading of 76,000 becquerels per liter.

Earlier Japan's nuclear regulator slammed the stricken Fukushima plant operator for incorrectly measuring radiation levels in contaminated groundwater at the site.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) accused TEPCO of lacking basic understanding of measuring and handling radiation almost three years since the reactor meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

On Thursday, fears of new leaks surfaced in Japanese media, as the same newspaper reported two cracks in a concrete floor of the No. 1 facility near radioactive water storage tanks.

TEPCO suggested some contaminated water from the melting snow may have seeped into the ground through the cracks, stretching for 12 and 8 meters.

The leakage of radiation-contaminated water is posing a major threat to Japan’s population and environment and to the international community since the March 2011 disaster.

Comments (22)


Jim Mooney 16.02.2014 21:08

The Russians know the most about this from Chernobyl. The South Koreans can build the most Massive machines on earth, quickly, to do a huge job. But they are both being ignored. The entire thing is insane. But that's "government as usual" everywhere - certainly in the US, also.

A wall won't do any good - too much groundwater connection. They'd need an enormous concrete bowl underneath, huge enough to stop another possible meltdown.


siyousyanamae 16.02.2014 18:51

Fukushima worker “5,000,000 Bq/L of Strontium-90 water got on the boots” / Tokyo Electric “I’m sorry.”
Februa ry 8th, 2014 Fukushima Diary

Fukus hima workers were building the underground wall only a few meters away from the location that Fukushima workers measured 5,000,000 Bq/L of Strontium-90 from the groundwater of. However, Tokyo Electric did NOT inform the workers of the contamination level for over half a year.

Tokyo Electric showed a certain kind of emotion, which is very rare, and commented “I’m sorry.” Tokyo Electric seems aware of the potential health effect of exposure.


Suzuki Hiroshi 15.02.2014 20:09

A Japanese Physician Is Encouraging the Evacuation of Tokyo
Feb 14, 2014

The physician has tested patients living in Tokyo, and the physician has found harmful symptoms.
The physician has seen a decline in the neutrophil component in white blood cells. The decline can lead to fatal conditions like septicemia.

The physician has seen patients living in Tokyo who are badly affected, but when the patients move to western Japan, the patients get better. After the patients come back to Tokyo, it gets worse again.
The physician recommends that anyone living in Tokyo head to western Japan 1 or 2 months out of the year.

View all comments (22)
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