People in the fishing industry, including fishermen and brokers, work briskly on Feb. 7, 2019, at the Matsukawaura fishing port in Soma, Fukushima Prefecture.
Japan Lifts Shipment Restrictions on All Fish Species off Fukushima
February 25, 2020
Fukushima, Feb. 25 (Jiji Press)–The Japanese government has lifted shipment restrictions on all of its designated fish species caught off Fukushima Prefecture that were introduced due to the 2011 nuclear disaster, a panel said Tuesday.
The government’s Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters announced the lifting after fish of the one last remaining species of the 43 satisfied safety standards.
The restrictions had covered the 43 fish species caught off Fukushima, which hosts the disaster-crippled Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. The last one is a species of skate.
In August 2016, the shipment restrictions on the fish were lifted. But in January 2019, the restrictions were reinstated after above-limit cesium was detected from skates caught off Fukushima.
Currently, members of the Fukushima Prefectural Federation of Fisheries Cooperative Associations voluntarily refrain from fishing in waters within 10 kilometers of the TEPCO plant, which underwent a triple meltdown after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Fishermen in Fukushima now free to ship all catches of fish
February 26, 2020
The last restrictions on fish taken off Fukushima Prefecture were lifted on Feb. 25, freeing fishermen here to ship any species caught in the area.
A ban was imposed on ocellate skate after one caught in the area was found to have levels of radioactive cesium exceeding the government standard of 100 becquerels per kilogram in January 2019.
The government task force on the Fukushima nuclear disaster removed restrictions on the bottom-feeding species related to rays after the prefecture measured levels in about 1,000 fish, and found none exceeded the standard.
The maximum amount found in the fish was 17 becquerels.
The prefecture has since asked the government to lift the restrictions.
Restrictions were placed on 43 species of fish caught off the coast of the prefecture following the 2011 accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
The restrictions were lifted in stages after the safety of the fish was confirmed, with some fishing allowed on a trial basis.
In 2019, with trial fishing on limited days and in specified areas, the annual catch from the area stood at 3,584 tons, only about 14 percent of that in 2010, a year before the nuclear disaster.
Discussions will now start to resume full operation.