The Japanese government’s plan to build intermediate storage facilities for radioactive waste from the 2011 nuclear accident is set to move ahead, now that the candidate sites have accepted the plan.
The government wants to build facilities for storing contaminated soil and debris on a 16-square-kilometer site straddling the towns of Futaba and Okuma in Fukushima Prefecture. The 2 towns host the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
Okuma accepted the plan last month. The mayor of Futaba made the same decision on Tuesday in Iwaki city, where most of the town’s residents have evacuated.
Those in favor of accepting the intermediate storage facilities say they will help speed up decontamination efforts in the region.
But others cite the risk of the intermediate facilities becoming permanent unless the government fulfills its promise to dispose of nuclear waste outside the prefecture.
The government plans to continue purchase negotiations with the site’s landowners. It is also working out safety arrangements with the prefecture and the 2 towns for the transportation of radioactive waste to the facilities.
Futaba Mayor Shiro Izawa said acceptance of the government’s plan is an unavoidable part of accelerating post-disaster rebuilding.