Controversial Fukushima water flow

Tepco have completed their treatment of 800,000 tons of water that flushed through the stricken reactors, stripping out solid and aqueous radionuclides like Sr‑90 and Cs‑134. However, they have yet to devise an effective way of removing 57ml of tritium, H‑3, from this water, and storage capacity is starting to run out. As a response, Tepco are proposing slowly releasing the tritiated water into the Pacific, pointing out that the health hazards associated with the very‑low energy isotope are small.

This proposal comes as a blow to Kurion, a tech start‑up recently acquired by Veolia, who are claiming that they have a design for a plant that will strip the H‑3 out of the water, and will have it operational in 18 months. Whether that’s a timeframe that can be tolerated, as 300 additional tons of water pile up daily, is another question entirely.

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