Anchor: A South Korean inspection team returned from Japan last Friday after conducting a six-day review of preparations for the release of contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant. The head of the team briefed the public on Wednesday, explaining that the experts must conduct further analyses to draw a conclusion.
Our Bae Joo-yon has more.
Report: After inspecting the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan last week, the head of a South Korean team of experts held a press conference in Seoul on Wednesday to summarize their trip.
He said the 21-member team had extensively inspected key equipment that will be used to discharge the contaminated water but further analyses are needed to reach a more conclusive assessment.
[Sound bite: Nuclear Safety and Security Commission Chairperson Yoo Guk-hee (Korean-English)]
“Through the latest inspection, we were able to check whether key equipment was installed as planned. We also confirmed measures that are in place to block the emergency release of contaminated water under abnormal circumstances. However, as I mentioned earlier, additional analyses and confirmation efforts are necessary to comprehensively assess the adequacy of the key equipment’s functions.”
Nuclear Safety and Security Commission Chairperson Yoo Guk-hee told reporters that the team secured density reports from 2019 through 2022 for ALPS as it was used to remove various radioactive materials from the contaminated water.
The experts also checked the lifespan of absorbents used in ALPS and secured data on key malfunctions to determine whether the system can be operated stably for a long period of time.
The team plans to comprehensively confirm the function of ALPS by analyzing the materials that it has secured as well as the results of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s checks of treated water samples from the plant.
On concerns over tritium, which cannot be removed via ALPS, the experts inspected equipment that will be used to dilute and release the radioactive isotope of hydrogen.
The six-day stay also included a review of the specifications and installation status of circulating pumps among tanks used to store contaminated water as well as their blueprints and inspection records.
The experts assessed that they were able to make progress in their scientific and technical review by securing substantial materials, but were quick to add that further analyses and confirmation efforts are needed for more accurate evaluations.
The team plans to comprehensively assess Japan’s discharge plan and reveal the results after obtaining additional materials and holding question-and-answer sessions with Japan.
Bae Joo-yon, KBS World Radio News.