See More on Facebook

Current affairs

Nuclear debris to be removed at Fukushima No. 1 plant in 2021

Clean up operations have been ongoing within the area but nuclear debris has been left sealed.


Written by

Updated: July 26, 2019

The government and Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, Inc. plan to start removing nuclear fuel debris — a mixture of melted nuclear fuel and parts of the reactor — from the No. 2 reactor of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in 2021, The Yomiuri SHimbun has learned.

An agency that advises the government on the technical aspects of decommissioning work will release as early as August an overview of its Technical Strategic Plan — which includes the debris removal plan — and begin to hash out the details of the work. Preparation has thus begun in earnest on the removal of debris, an operation that will determine the success or failure of decommissioning.

Decommissioning work is taking place at the three reactors of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant that experienced meltdowns due to the massive tsunami following the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011. At the No. 2 reactor, pebble-like deposits believed to be nuclear fuel debris were found at the bottom of the containment vessel, and then gripped and moved using a device. At the No. 1 reactor, an internal probe to confirm the existence of debris has not yet been conducted because of the high radiation level outside the containment vessel. At the No. 3 reactor, the high water level inside the containment vessel makes it difficult to remove debris.

The Nuclear Damage Compensation and Decommissioning Facilitation Corporation — the aforementioned agency that will make technical proposals to the government — determined that debris can be removed more safely and reliably at the No. 2 reactor than at the other reactors. The agency plans to specify that debris removal work will first take place at the No. 2 reactor in its Technical Strategic Plan.

The government and TEPCO will then make the official decision this fiscal year to begin removing debris at the No. 2 reactor in 2021. They plan to include the decision in the government’s road map for decommissioning work. They will collect a small amount of debris on a trial basis to determine the challenges of removal in the second half of this fiscal year.Speech



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


The Japan News
About the Author: The Japan News is published by The Yomiuri Shimbun, which boasts the largest circulation in the world.

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Current affairs

UNSC to hold ‘closed door’ meeting on India’s Kashmir move: Reports

The meeting will be held at Pakistan’s request. The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) will reportedly hold a “closed door” meeting to discuss India’s move to revoke Article 37, that had granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir. UNSC President Joanna Wronecka told reporters on Wednesday said that they would discuss “the Jammu and Kashmir situation behind closed doors most likely on August 16”, according to media reports. The development comes after Pakistan wrote a formal letter to the UNSC president calling for an emergency meeting of the UNSC to discuss India’s move to revoke the special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The letter was sent through Permanent Representative Maleha Lodhi to convene the meeting. “I have requested in the letter that a special meeting of the Security Council should be called to discuss those actions of India which we consider as illegal and aga


By The Statesman
August 16, 2019

Current affairs

PM Imran warns Modi against action in AJK

‘Every brick will be countered with a stone’. Prime Minister Imran Khan, while addressing a special session of the Azad Jammu and Kashmir legislative assembly on Wednesday, warned Indian premier Narendra Modi that any action by India in Pakistan would be countered with a stronger response. Agreeing with the AJK prime minister, Raja Farooq Haider, who in his speech in the AJK parliament had said India would also look to create trouble in Pakistan after Kashmir, Prime Minister Imran said: “This will not stop in Kashmir — this hate-filled ideology will come towards Pakistan.” “We have information and we have had two National Security Committee (NSC) meetings. The Pakistan Army has full knowledge that India has made a plan t


By Dawn
August 15, 2019

Current affairs

Pakistan to observe Kashmir Solidarity Day on August 14

Prime Minister Imran Khan will visit the border town of Muzaffarabad. Prime Minister Imran Khan will visit Muzaffarabad on August 14, as part of the government’s decision to observe Independence Day this year in solidarity with Kashmiris. The prime minister will address the Azad Jammu and Kashmir legislative assembly, Radio Pakistan reported. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto had already arrived separately in the AJK capital on Sunday night to celebrate Eidul Azha and as a show of support to the Kashmiri people. The decision to dedicate Independence Day to the Kashmiris and their “just struggle for their right of self-determination” was 


By Dawn
August 14, 2019

Current affairs

Family confirms body found is Nora Anne’s

The child was feared to be kidnapped from her resort hotel. The family of Nora Anne Quoirin has confirmed that the body found is that of the missing Irish teenager, according to the Negri Sembilan police chief. Mohamad Mat Yusop, who was at the Tuanku Ja’afar Hospital, said the family was brought in to identify the body and had confirmed that it was Nora Anne, who went missing from a resort on Aug 4. A post-mortem will be done on Wednesday morning (Aug 14). A senior pathologist from Kuala Lumpur will be performing the post-mortem. Earlier, a group of trekkers found Nora Anne’s naked body in a stream some 2.5km from the resort she was staying with her family at 1.57pm Tuesday (Aug 13). The remains were found near Gunung Berembun in Pantai Hills. Nora Anne, 15, had checked into the property with her parents, Sebastian Marie Philipe and Meabh Jaseprine Quoirin, and siblings


By The Star
August 14, 2019

Current affairs

Hong Kong protests shut down airport in biggest disruption yet

Flights could resume on Tuesday. Hong Kong was forced to shut down its airport on Monday (Aug 12), grounding around 200 flights and affecting many others worldwide, after thousands of protesters swarmed the main terminal building in the biggest disruption yet to the city’s economy since demonstrations escalated in June. The airport authorities said flights could resume early Tuesday (Aug 13) depending on recovery operations after protester numbers dwindled in the evening. They also urged passengers to check that their flights were confirmed before heading to the airport. But protest organisers have vowed to hold a large-scale “eye for an eye” sit-in at the airport this afternoon to protest against the escalation of force by police following another weekend of violent demonstrations across Hong Kong. This would be the fifth continuous day that protesters have occupied


By The Straits Times
August 13, 2019

Current affairs

Pakistan dedicates Eid to occupied Kashmir

The move of solidarity came after India strips region of special status. People gathered in mosques across Pakistan on Monday to offer special prayers for Eidul Azha. The government has called for the festival to be observed in a “simple manner” this year, to express solidarity with Kashmiris living in Indian-occupied Kashmir. On Aug 5, India dropped a constitutional provision that had allowed Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir to make its own laws, and also broke up the state into two federally administered territories. Before moving a rushed presidential order in its Senate, New Delhi placed Kashmiri leaders under house arrest and imposed a strict curfew. Read: India has done away with t


By Dawn
August 13, 2019