Another problem has arisen with the ‘freezing earth wall’ that prevents the production of radioactively contaminated water at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan. The pipe was damaged and 4 tons of refrigerant leaked out. The Japanese side said that the refrigerant is not a radioactive pollutant and there is no problem, but since a similar thing happened last year, the anxiety of citizens is growing.
Correspondent Kim Min-gwan.
Liquid refrigerant leaked from the frozen ground wall installed at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan.
The nuclear power plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, estimated that the amount of leakage was about 4 tons.
The 1.4km-long permafrost wall freezes the surrounding land using a refrigerant of about -40 degrees Celsius.
This prevents groundwater from seeping into the nuclear power plant and creating radioactively contaminated water.
It also serves to prevent the already-made contaminated water from flowing out. It is estimated that 1.3 million tons of contaminated water produced in the first nuclear power plant so far.
If there is a problem with the frozen soil wall, not only does the amount of contaminated water increase, but also the possibility of runoff.
First, TEPCO claimed that “the leaked refrigerant is not a radioactive contaminant, so there is no environmental impact.”
He also said, “Even if the refrigerant leaks, there is no problem because it takes several months for the frozen soil wall itself to melt.”
However, even with this explanation, the anxiety of the citizens does not go away.
This is because there was also a problem that the temperature in some sections of the frozen soil wall rose to freezing last year.
The Japanese government is still working to determine the cause.
(Video design: Lee Jeong-hoe, Hwang Soo-bi)