Earthquake shakes Fukushima: Nuclear power plant operator reacts

After an earthquake, the operator of the Fukushima nuclear power plant stopped discharging cooling water. This is a security measure.

After an earthquake in Japan, the operator of the destroyed Fukushima nuclear power plant temporarily suspended the controlled discharge of cooling water into the sea on Friday.

The operating company Tepco announced in the online service X that there were “no anomalies” in the system for diluting and discharging treated water.

But “to be on the safe side, we have suspended the operations of the facilities in accordance with the predefined operating procedures.”

Shortly after midnight (local time) an earthquake of magnitude 5.8 occurred off the coast of the northeastern region of Fukushima, where the nuclear power plant that was badly damaged by a tsunami in 2011 is located.

However, a few hours later the all-clear was given. No radiation was detected and the measured values were within the normal range, explains TEPCO. The water discharge should then continue on Friday.

Operator: No anomalies detected

The Japanese Nuclear Regulatory Authority also announced shortly after the quake that no anomalies had been found in either the destroyed Fukushima Daiichi plant or its sister plant, Fukushima Daini.

Since August 2023, Tepco has been diverting some of the former cooling water from the nuclear power plant into the sea. To do this, it is prepared, filtered and diluted in several steps.

Because the storage capacity for the radioactive water in the plant is not sufficient, a total of more than 1.3 million cubic meters will be discharged into the sea over decades.

The east coast of Japan was hit by a severe earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

As a result of the natural disaster, 18,000 people died. It also resulted in the failure of the cooling system at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, and a core meltdown occurred in three of the six reactors. It was the worst nuclear accident since the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.

Tsunami warning: Strong earthquake hits Fukushima


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