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Sunday, 3 November 2013

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) has accepted Washington’s offer to help with the cleanup and decommissioning of Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.


The move comes as TEPCO prepares for the major operation of removing fuel rods from Unit 4.
TEPCO president Naomi Hirose said the decision was made Friday when US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz visited the nuclear plant. 

“Secretary Moniz and I became consistent through our talking today with the necessity of further strengthening cooperation, to contribute to the nuclear power and decommissioning industry not only between the two countries but throughout the world, by sharing and accumulating technology and knowledge towards the stability and decommissioning of the power station,” Hirose said in a statement published on TEPCO’s website...

... The fuel removal at Unit 4 is said to be the toughest and most dangerous operation for TEPCO; one wrong move could result in horrific quantities of radiation being released into the atmosphere or cause an explosion many times worse than the original disaster. 

Reactor 4 contains 10 times more Cesium-137 than Chernobyl did. Scientists have warned that another nuclear disaster could be the beginning of an ultimate catastrophe for the planet. The mid-November fuel removal operation will be just the first step in a decommissioning process that is expected to take decades. 

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