Japan is pumping water from the Fukushima plant disaster into the ocean

Japan is pumping water from the Fukushima plant disaster into the ocean

Katelin Williams
eSomethin Staff

Over a month ago, Japan began to dump 1.3 million tons of treated water from the Fukushima plant disaster into the ocean. This treated water was previously contaminated with tritium waste that was used in the power plant.

In 2011, a tsunami following a 9.0 magnitude earthquake swept through Fukushima’s power plant, disabling the power and cooling systems. In the wake of this disaster, meltdowns occurred in three reactors. The following day, a hydrogen explosion releases radiation into the air, causing locals in a 12-mile radius to evacuate.

“In the state we’re in globally with the rising population of humans, the intoxicated fish will eventually reach us through biomagnification and the food chain,” said Elise Kaiser,  a freshman in the environmental club. 

Elise Kaiser (Photo Credit: Katelin Williams)

This radioactive element can increase the risk of cancer if it is consumed in excessive quantities. Seafood is a dietary staple in Japan and countries in the area. Consuming the fish from the dump site could be hazardous, which is why China has decided to forgo purchasing seafood from their main provider, Japan, according to the Associated Press.

The Japanese prime minister consumed a “very delicious” fish that was caught from the release site of the treated waste that was prepared into sashimi. This action sparked controversies on social media with people commenting that the fish wasn’t caught from the ocean and that it was caught elsewhere.

“There are a lot of people around the southeast side of Asia. The people and oceans could be affected and this waste can loop back to other places of the world.” Elise states.

In a recent sample collected of the waters, no tritium waste has been found in 51 fish caught near the release site of the Fukushima facility, according to the F.D.A. This dawns a bit of hope on this situation knowing that our waters may not be contaminated with tritium waste after all.

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