TEPCO is smarter than you think.
By deferring the decision on what to do with the treated water at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, TEPCO will be able to dump it in the end anyway, when the storage tanks becomes full by March next year. Wait till the last minute, like it did with the first dumping of low-contamination water in April, and TEPCO can plead to the government that there is no other choice. The government will approve the dumping, with regrets, telling citizens that there is no other choice, and claim it will have obtained permission from countries that may be affected. The chief cabinet secretary will no doubt on hand to say there is no immediate effect on marine life, no immediate effect on human life, just like the previous cabinet secretary said.
Same old, same old.
From NHK Japanese (last update 4:50AM JST 12/9/2011):
TEPCO to defer the decision on release of treated water into the ocean
TEPCO has been considering the release of water treated to remove radioactive materials at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant into the ocean, after further treating it to reduce the remaining radioactive materials. However, faced with the protest from the fisheries cooperative associations, the company has deferred the decision on whether to release the water or not.
At Fukushima I Nuke Plant, the contaminated water in the reactor/turbine building basements are treated and recycled to cool the reactors. However, groundwater has been leaking inside the building, creating more contaminated water than initially anticipated. According to TEPCO, it is difficult to stop the inflow of groundwater, and there is much excess water even after recycling. By March next year, the storage tanks with total 160,000 tonnes capacity may become full, the company says.
TEPCO has been considering the release of the water after treating further to reduce the remaining radioactive materials to drop the density of radioactive materials below the national standard. The plan was to be included in the operational plan of the plant for the next 3 years which was submitted to the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency on December 8 evening.
However, due to the protest from the national federation of fisheries cooperative associations demanding the company not to release the water into the ocean, TEPCO didn't include the issue of the treated water in the operational plan, and deferred the decision on the release of the water into the ocean.
TEPCO's spokesman Junichi Matsumoto says, "We couldn't decide on what to do with the treated water. We should make a decision soon, but we will consider various opinions carefully."
400 tonnes of groundwater is flowing into the building basements per day. 12,000 tonnes per month. 144,000 tonnes per year.
I have a better idea than dumping the treated water into the Pacific Ocean. Bottle it and sell the bottles, naming it, say "Fukushima Pure" or something. It should be a smashing success with people who are eager to obtain radiation hormesis effect. Lifetime supplies to Doctors Rockwell and Allison, Guardian's Monbiot who came to love nuclear power because of the Fukushima accident. Minister of the Environment Hosono and his sidekick Sonoda can have them too.
100 million becquerels per liter of radioactive strontium and plenty of tritium. Mmmm.