JAPAN | Fukushima to decontaminate entire city

Posted on July 13, 2011

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JAPAN | YOMIURI | 13 July 2011

The Fukushima municipal government likely will decontaminate the city’s entire area in response to the ongoing crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, according to city government sources.

Fukushima is the second municipality in Fukushima Prefecture that plans to decontaminate the entire area under its jurisdiction. The first is Date.

Fear of radioactive contamination is widespread among the city’s residents as radiation levels in some areas of the city have been confirmed as higher than those within the 20-kilometer-radius no-entry zone surrounding the nuclear power plant.

Fukushima is about 50 kilometers from the Fukushima plant.

The Fukushima municipal government plans to develop a “hometown decontamination plan” for the current fiscal year by early August.

Ahead of developing the comprehensive plan, the government intends to start decontamination operations in the Watari and Onami districts, where high radiation levels have been detected.

The municipal government’s measures include using high-pressure water to wash buildings and removing surface soil from the ground.

The city government expects it will take at least several years–and possibly close to 20–to decontaminate the whole city.

According to the government, the main targets of decontamination are public facilities, farmland, rivers and mountains.

The order of decontamination operations will be decided in accordance with the amount of radiation and the level at which residents use the areas or facilities.

The government anticipates decontamination of private homes will be carried out by citizens themselves based on manuals it will distribute.

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