IAEA: Decommissioning efforts improved at Fukushima nuclear power plant

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An expert team from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said the Japanese government has taken a more positive approach to addressing challenges due to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The 19-member team visited the site from November 25-December 4 and examined a variety of issues dealing with decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi plant. The team focused on work that Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) is doing to remove fuel assemblies from the Unit 4 spent fuel pool and contaminated water issues.

In its preliminary report, the team praised TEPCO and the government for a number of accomplishments, including developing a number of well-defined measures to manage the plant’s contaminated water issues, establishing a comprehensive radiation monitoring program and developing innovative tools to address key technical problems. The team also said the government and TEPCO must continue efforts to address water issues, including preventing groundwater from entering reactor buildings and bolstering efforts to treat the water; develop waste management solutions and enhance the seawater monitoring program.

IAEA said it will deliver the final report to Japan by the end of January.

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