There are no easy answers and no quick fixes at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. A new obstacle to resolve is the rising level of radiation in seawater near the facility, which tested out at thousands of times above what is considered acceptable.
It has been nearly three weeks since a tsunami and earthquake rattled the plant and crews are no closer today to stabilizing the crisis.
For the first time, The Tokyo Electric Company finally said it will have to decommission four of the six nuclear reactors once the crisis is over.
TEPCO’s Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata at a news conference said, “after pouring seawater on them, I believe we can not use them anymore.” Japanese authorities have been saying for days that the plug must be pulled on the entire plant.
Yuhei Sato, governor of Fukushima prefecture told the Associated Press, “I am extremely disappointed and saddened by the suggestion that this might drag out longer.”
Sato’s comments come as radiation continues to flow into the soil, vegetables, milk, and tap water, and the discovery of toxic plutonium in soil, as well.
The pressure to take control of the power plant has taken its toll on Masataka Shimizu TEPCO’s president, who reportedly was taken to a hospital suffering from health and emotional problems, but there are conflicting reports as to his whereabouts.
TEPCO Chairman Katsumata is stepping in as the lack of leadership becomes more apparent with each passing day.
Truly nothing comes as easy for crews trying to gain the upper hand. Tanks storing contaminated water are filling up, and there is no place to put more water, while crews drain tanks.
The number of confirmed dead is 11,257, while hundreds of thousands of people remain homeless from the March 11 twin natural disaster.
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