Fukushima nuclear reactors deemed stable

The Fukushima Daiichi reactors are in “a state of cold shutdown,” with temperatures at the bottom of the reactor pressure vessels and containment vessels below the boiling point and radiation levels at the plant boundary below 100 millirem per year, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute. Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda made the announcement Dec. 16.

The Japanese government will create a new body to oversee the decontamination and decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi plant, led by a cabinet minister and the president of Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO). TEPCO estimates used fuel will be removed from storage pools at the plant within two years and melted fuel from the reactors within 25 years. The timetable estimates completion of site decommissioning within 40 years.

The Japanese government will revise the designation of no-entry and evacuation zones near the Fukushima Daiichi facility.

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